CONVERSATION WITH YOU-KNOW-WHO
(as written to Ian Ayres)
Id been pen pals with Quentin Crisp for quite some time before we actually met in the flesh. In one letter I asked him how he felt about being a part of gay history. He responded in his usual shaky writing with: "Gay" history will, as time goes by, evaporate. As it becomes unimportant what sex people have, we shall only be a tiny footnote in the dictionary of the world.
But, in a later letter, regarding the oppression of homosexuals, he wrote: I have frequently told the young that freedom comes and goeslike the tides. The Jews are in and out of favor in the Soviet Union every ten years or so. We shall always fear the threat of oppression. It is as natural and as inevitable as the weather.
In response to a letter in which I asked Quentin how he imagines his meeting with God will go, he wrote: Here is my conversation with You-Know-Who.
Y.K.W: Come in.
Me: Ive arrived.
Y.K.W: So what?
Me: I thought I had to announce my arrival.
Y.K.W: Whatever for?
Me: I dont know. Im sorry. Shall I go?
Y.K.W: By all means.
Me: Where shall I start?
Y.K.W: Anywhere. Youre not going to like it here, you know.
Me: I thought I was in Heaven.
Y.K.W: Its a Hell of a place. Youll have to learn to play the harp, for one thing.
Me: Oh, g. I mean, Dear me!
Y.K.W: I never liked you.
Me: Nor I you, Sir.
Y.K.W: Good. Now weve got that straight.
Me: Good-bye, Sir.
Y.K.W: Good-bye. I dont expect well see each other again.
Photograph copyright © by Phillip Ward. All rights reserved.
Quentin Crisp text copyright © 19992007 by Quentin Crisp. All rights reserved.
Text taken from personal letter written to Ian Ayres.
Please note that all texts of letters written by Quentin Crisp remain copyrighted by Quentin Crisp. Permissions to print or publish any or parts of Mr. Crisp's letters must be obtained from his literary agents.
Site Copyright © 19992007 by the Quentin Crisp Archives
All rights reserved.