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THE ORTON DIARIES, 1967

 

John Kingsley "Joe" Orton (1933–67) was an English playwright, well-known during only his last three years, when he shocked, outraged, and amused audiences with his scandalous black comedies. He kept diaries during only the last eight months of his life. They were edited by John Lahr and posthumously published in 1986.

The diaries were always intended for eventual publication, despite their sexual frankness.  In his own diary, the actor Kenneth Williams recorded saying to Orton, "Pepys put all his references to sexual matters in code so that no one would know", to which Orton replied, "I don't care who knows."

Orton was murdered with a hammer by Kenneth Halliwell, with whom he had been living for sixteen years. Once his lover, their sexual relationship had long been virtually extinguished, as the diaries show, and Halliwell had grown increasingly and violently jealous of Orton’s literary success.

While at home in England, Orton had fairly frequent, invariably casual sex with men, but in Morocco, with the exception of one young man, his almost daily sexual encounters were with teenage boys. Moreover, thrice in his diaries he expressed his exasperation that he could not have sex with boys in England and implied that his preference was for boys of fifteen.

Because all the homosexual encounters described by Orton were casual except those with one Moroccan of fourteen or fifteen, age is the only means of determining which should be considered pederastic and which androphilic.  In what follows, all sexual references to boys below the arbitrary age of seventeen are noted.

 

London December 1966-May 1967

Tuesday 18 April

Describing lunch with Ian Horobin, former M.P. and Parliamentary Secretary of Power, at Simpson's in the Strand:

Then he told me how he'd found an astonishing village down south in Morocco called - I think - Tianiz, 'which is absolutely unspoiled. We stayed at a little place and there were boys galore and so nice. Not spoiled like Tangier.' He then said he's been to Lisbon, 'which also,' he said, lowering his voice, 'is very good. But you must have a flat, of course. These wretched hotels simply won't allow you to take anyone back.' [p. 139]

 

Tuesday 25 April 

Describing a party he attended at “Kenneth W.”[1]’s flat in London:

We had a very interesting evening. I told a lot of stories about sex. ‘As long as they [new arrivals at the party] won’t be shocked like the time I told Gordon Jackson[2] how I’d fucked that kid of thirteen,’ I said. ‘No, No!’ Kenneth W. said, ‘They love all that filth. …’ [p. 143]

 

Tangier May-June 1967

It will be helpful for understanding of Orton to preface this section with a summary of all his sexual activity in Morocco this spring. During his first nineteen days there, Orton continued to be promiscuous.  Those he describes sex with were six: Mohammed, a “very beautiful” boy of 15 or 16 “whom I knew (but had never had) from last year.” Larbi, aged 15, more frequently engaged in masturbation  with Halliwell, Mohammed Khomsi, aged 19, Nasser, aged 25 (despite Orton making the objection “but, I like boys”), another Mohammed, aged 15 or 16, and finally Mohammed “Yellow-jersey”, described first as about 15, then as 14.  From a fortnight after his first sex with the latter, there is no more mention of sex with anyone else, and he describes pedicating this boy nearly every one of his remaining thirty days in Morocco.

Sunday 7 May

Orton and Halliwell flew in that day from London, intending to stay two months, and taking a flat rented from a queer Frenchman:

After changing we went down to The Windmill, a beach place run by an Englishman (Bill Dent) and an Irishman (Mike). […] We had tea and went out on the terrace, which is by the railway line. As I was sitting half—asleep, a small voice said ‘Hallo’. It was a little boy. I had a little conversation. He asked my name. ‘Joe,’ I said. He nodded. ‘Joo,’ he said, ‘yes.’ ‘Are you going home now,’ he said. ‘No,’ I said, lying, ‘I’m staying with friends.’ He spoke then of how he was at school and was learning English. After more conversation, during a lull, he said, wistfully, ‘Do you like boys?’ ‘Sometimes,’ I said. He nodded. ‘You fuck him?’ he said, nodding at Kenneth. I shook my head and he said, conspiratorially, ‘He is asleep.’ And then, ‘You will be here many days?’ ‘Yes,’ I said. ‘Goodbye,’ he said, with a smile and stopped. ‘I am Hassan,’ he said. After he had gone, K. said, ‘You can’t have him - he is about ten.’ ‘It’ll have to be a cabin job,’ I said. ‘They won’t allow him in the cabins,’ he said. ‘Along the beach then,’ I said.

[... That evening] When we were at the steps leading from the casbah, three very beautiful boys approached. ‘You English?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘You like to come for a ride in a taxi?’ the prettiest one said. We were too wise to be caught in that trap and we said ‘no’. ‘I’ll take a single one back sometime,’ I said to Ken. ‘But not three and not in a taxi.’ ‘The taxi driver is probably in the act,’ Ken said.

Orton, Kenneth Williams and Halliwell in Tangier, 1965

Monday 8 May

[...] We saw Bill Fox sitting and drinking coffee at a café. He said, as we sat down, that he’s had a little chicken who’d sucked his cock. ‘He said he loved it,’ he laughed. ‘I thought of you immediately Joe, though he’s too small to fuck, I’m sure.’ I asked him his name. ‘Hassan,’ he said. ‘That’s the one I spoke to at the Windmill,’ I said. ‘I must have him, only I can’t take him back to our place. Not after last year, and we are staying the summer.’ ‘You can have him at my flat,’ Bill said. ‘I’ll fix it up for you.’

 

Tuesday 9 May

We went down to the beach early today. It had cleared up. Clouds passing over the sun, but enough heat to be pleasant. We were hailed with ‘Hallo’ from a very beautiful sixteen-year-old boy whom I knew (but had never had) from last year. Kenneth wanted him. We talked for about five minutes and finally I said, ‘Come to our apartment for tea this afternoon.’ He was very eager. We arranged that he should meet us at The Windnill beach place. As we left the boy, Kenneth said, ‘Wasn’t I good at arranging the thing?’ This astounded me. ‘I arranged it,’ I said. ‘You would have been standing there talking about the weather for ever.’ K. didn’t reply.’

I borrowed the keys of Bill Fox’s flat – (because I thought I must test the boy out in less grand surroundings than the flat we’ve taken) and went over to the boy. He was standing under a tree in the rain. He smiled, I nodded in the direction of the waste ground opposite the beach. He took my hand and we ran across the wasteland in the rain. We reached the flat and I had difficulty in finding how to open it. Fortunately nobody came up. I was dressed poorly myself in a pair of ordinary trousers and a polo-necked jumper – now wet with rain. I got the door open and we went inside – I pissed. The boy stood in the centre of the room. I tried to explain that this apartment belonged to a friend. He seemed to understand neither French, English or Spanish. I took him to the bed. Kissed him. He was shy and didn’t open his mouth. He got very excited when I undressed him. I undressed myself and we lay caressing each other for about ten minutes. He had a heavy loutish body, large cock, but not so large as to make me envious or shy. I turned him over. He wouldn’t let me get in so I fucked along the line of his buttocks which was very exciting. He’d wiped his spit on his bum. When I’d come a great patch on Bill Fox’s coverlet, I went and fetched a towel – then we kissed some more, neck, cheeks, eyes – he still wouldn’t open his mouth – strange for an Arab boy – he must be about fifteen, surely he’d have learned (I later was told that he had only recently come up from the country). He then turned me over and came along the line of my buttocks in the same way. Suddenly he stopped and said, ‘How much you give me?’ ‘Five dirham,’ I said. ‘No, please, fifteen.’ ‘No,’ I said, ‘five.’ He grinned. ‘OK,’ he said and went on. He took a very long time to come. We lay together for an hour afterwards while the rain poured down outside and the thunder roared. His name is Mohammed. We then took a shower together. I then gave him five dirhams, slipped it into his pocket. He said, ‘Please, one more.’ Because he was sweet, and even on a matter of one dirham, they like to gain a victory, I gave him an extra. He kissed my cheek, I hugged him and said I’d see him again. He left the flat first. I wiped up the floor in the bathroom, which was swimming, and left. Alan, who had had a most unsatisfactory experience with a drunken English sailor the night before, said, ‘Well I don’t really mind,’ and laughed. He went off with a very attractive but very young boy later inviting Bill Fox, Kenneth and I up to his flat for a glass of wine before dinner. [pp. 160-1]

 

Wednesday 10 May

[...] Kenneth and I went down to The Windmill and I was going to have Mohammed again only Kenneth said, 'Larbi is coming at four for tea - I shall not want him, so you can have him.' So, I gave Mohammed a couple of dirhams, though I would much have preferred to have had him. Then we met the two thirteen-year-olds from last year, Mustapha and Absolem. But it really is too dangerous to go with the little ones, so I said ‘no’. We went back to the flat. We had tea and Ken and Larbi went into the bedroom. I’d had a couple of librium tablets and switched all the lights out in the salon and lay on the leopard-skin couch and dozed off. When Ken came back, they had had sex. ‘I’ve arranged for you to have him tomorrow,’ Kenneth said in a confidential tone when the boy was out of the room. ‘But I’ve already arranged to have Mohammed tomorrow,’ I said. ‘I really wish you wouldn’t play the procuress quite so much. I’m quite capable of managing my own sex!’ Kenneth then went into the bedroom to put his tie on and sat next to Larbi and kissed him. We then lay on the couch. I put my hand between his legs and felt his arse, to which he had no objection. ‘We make l’amour tomorrow?’ he said. I nodded, excited by the prospect, yet wondering how to put the other one off. [p. 161]

 

Thursday 11 May


Weather a little better, the sun came out and was very hot. Got slightly burnt across the shoulders. I arranged to go with Mohammed tomorrow, and in the early afternoon Ken and I went home to the flat. I took three valium tablets […]

I fucked Larbi a bit up the bum, with him making grunts and then, the valium, I suppose, I lost the hard. I went to the loo and had a piss, came back, tried to turn him over again. He shook his head and said, ‘No, please.’ ‘You don’t want me to fuck you?’ I said. ‘No,’ he said. We made love a lot longer and I came on his belly. Then he made me toss him off with my come. We lay for about half an hour after this, stroking each other, and then took a shower. Later Ken and I went out to dinner. [pp. 161-2]

 

Friday 12 May

He [Halliwell] then began complaining about my liking Mohammed (the first one) and how he was a nasty bit of work. ‘And you’re mad to go along the beach with him. Absolutely mad.’ He then began saying I would get into trouble. ‘That boy of yours looks a nutter to me.’ In the end, fed up to the back teeth with nagging, I said, ‘Every boy in town is no good except the marvelous one you attach yourself to.’ K. calmed down later. I had lunch. Chicken soup and I crumbled some hash into it. Then I went with Mohammed into the country, walking down dirt-tracks among the donkey shit. We walked for mile or more and then he stopped at a village shop, very tumbled-down, and went inside. He came out again with a half loaf and two oranges. The half loaf had fish in it. He ate this himself. He gave me the two oranges to eat. We walked on and lay in the grass. Found it was possible to be seen by the odd person from the road, the railway line, and even from houses and a bridge across a stream. ‘No good,’ Mohammed said and suggested the German baths. It was much too late by now to go into the casbah to the baths – especially as I had told Kenneth that I would be back by four and I couldn’t risk a repeat of this morning. So we walked back. I stopped at The Windmill and asked Mike if I could take the boy into the beach cabin. ‘Oh no,’ he said. ‘I have to be so careful you see.’ Stupid cow! What had he to be careful over? I told Mohammed it was too late. Gave him a couple of dirham and came home. [pp. 162-3]

                                                                     

Monday 15 May

Orton eating hash cake, 1967

Mohammed (I) turned up at The Windmill at twelve and suggested we go to the baths. So I followed him into the casbah. On the way we met Nasser, the waiter from the Hotel Cleleh, who is going to make me some hashish cake. Kenneth says it won’t be as good as valium or librium with a glass of wine. He looked at Mohammed (I) and said, ‘This your friend?’ ‘Yes,’ I said. ‘Good,’ he said in a very appreciative way. ‘A good boy.’ I arranged to give him five dirham for the ingredients and then he’d take them to Bill Fox’s flat. We walked a little way and then Nasser left us. Mohammed (I) pinched a lot of monkey nuts from a cart which was going by loaded with them, and gave me a handful. We went through miles of twisting evil-smelling alleys and finally got to the Spanish Baths. There were small cubicles and a heated room. The Moroccan attendant smiled and said something to the boy, who nodded. We went into the room, undressed and lay on the heated tiled floor.

I found it less exciting than I had at first imagined. The boy was as beautiful and as willing, though I found the heat unbearable. I tossed him off. He came only a small amount. They’re pulling their cocks twenty-four hours a day I suppose… We went into the other cubicle, where I realised that he’d forgotten to bring in a towel. I opened the door and the attendant appeared. He immediately looked down in the direction of my prick, which, since it was still semi-hard, was impressive enough. ‘Towel,’ I said. He disappeared and went for a towel. We dried ourselves and went outside. The attendant asked for five dirham each from me and the boy. Daylight robbery, but they know that the bath hadn’t been used for bathing. Mohammed (I) said ‘Too much money,’ when we were away from the baths. ‘You English they want too much money.’ I gave Mohammed (I) five – he asked for two more. I gave him one more. He smiled, shook hands and we parted. […]

I went to the bathroom door and opened it. Kenneth was standing just inside looking worried. ‘You’d better go and get rid of Larbi,’ he said. I went into the bedroom and Larbi was lying on the bed naked, playing with his cock which was completely limp. ‘He hasn’t been able to get a hard on!’ Kenneth said in tones of the utmost disapproval. ‘A fifteen-year-old boy and he can’t get a stand on. It’s absolutely shameful.’ ‘I felt very excited by Larbi’s complete passivity, brought on by the hashish and whiskey. However, I thought it was much too late, seven o’clock and two orgasms too late, to turn him over, so I picked him up and carried him to the shower. When I poured cold water on him he shrieked and giggled hysterically. ‘He likes being manhandled,’ Kenneth said bitterly. ‘Larbi said that when he’d left here early this morning he’d gone into the lavatory of his house and wanked himself off, like any English schoolboy,’ Kenneth said, though Mohammed [pp. 165-6]

 

Tangerine boy

Tuesday 16 May

[...] Mohammed Khomsi arrived. Then Larbi. Later I had Larbi. Afterwards it took me ages to toss him off. Finally I gave up, allowing him to wank himself, and only at the last minute did he force his prick into my hand, I pulled him off whilst sticking my tongue half-way down his throat. [p. 167]

 

Wednesday 17 May

[...] He [25-year-old Nasser] asked that I should be his friend – his amigo. I said, ‘But, I like boys.’

[...]the bell rang. It was Nigel, a very intelligent Englishman we had met, or rather Kenneth had met. Night had been a school-teacher. He’s very middle-class but it doesn’t show too much. Not in the least queer-looking. I looked out of the lavatory window. ‘What do you want?’ ‘I wondered –‘ he began and then said, ‘I’m not interrupting anything, am I?’ ‘No,’ I said, ‘we’ve just finished, I’ll let you in.’ So I went to the door and let him in. ‘I wondered if you were doing anything tonight.’ ‘No,’ I said. ‘We might have dinner together,’ he said, which was perfectly acceptable. Until Kenneth appeared we talked. Nigel had practically no sex at all until five years ago – he’s now forty-five. ‘None?’ I said. ‘A little at school,’ he said. ‘I’d pick up a woman occasionally, but I had no homosexual relationship until I came out here. Of course, I’d always wanted them.’ ‘Wasn’t it easy being a school-teacher?’ I said. ‘Oh, it was,’ he said, ‘it was terrible. And the boys, you know, are such terrible tarts. Once one of them called me into the music room and we sat down and he kissed me, and I mean, what can one do? I didn’t dare respond. So I simply smiled and pushed the boy off, with instruction to continue the five-finger exercise. [pp. 170-1]

 

Thursday 18 May

[...] I lay on the settee, while Ken had sex with Larbi. [p. 172]

    

Friday 19 May

[...] Two boys went by, one of whom was Absolem, whom I had had last year, but found him too lethargic, like something off a Rubens canvas. [p. 174]

 

Saturday 20 May

Orton and Halliwell go native

[...] We met Mustapha. He was about fourteen. ‘We’re going to Malabata,’ I said. ‘Would you like to come with us?’ He made no objection and we waited for the bus. However, there was the prospect of fucking Mustapha in the hills outside the town and I endured all with patience and thought of the tube of KY jelly in my haversack along with the bottles of lemonade. At last Nigel drew up in his car. It’s a four-seater and he offered to give us a lift. However, he hadn’t realised that Mustapha was with us and chickened-out of taking him on the grounds that he couldn’t carry six. I wanted to get out with Mustapha and wait for the bus, but Kenneth objected and said, ‘No, let Mustapha join us at Malabata.’ ‘But,’ objected Stalk, ‘he won’t do that.’ ‘Yes, he will,’ said Kenneth. By now I was in a great rage. ‘I’ll get out and get the bus with Mustapha,’ I said. ‘No, no!’ Kenneth said and, foreseeing great scenes ahead if I did get out, Nigel drove off, and before we were out of sight we saw the boy speaking to some tourist. I sat sick and glum. ‘It’s too dangerous to take boys of that age in the car,’ Kenneth said. Nigel agreed. I said nothing and went into a world of my own for the rest of the day, shutting the door and refusing to speak to anyone on the ill-fated trek to Malabata. Sulking in the hot sun, refusing even to drink and thinking of the wasted KY Jelly liquefying at the bottom of the bag. [pp. 175-6]

 

Sunday 21 May

George Greeves and Dai Rees-Davies[3] picked us up in the car at 10:30. [...]

We stopped at the beach. Talked to a boy covered in sand. He wanted to come with us. ‘No, we’d better not,’ George said. ‘He’s going to be a nuisance with that sandy arse in Dai’s car. Dai likes a sandy arse on his face, but not on his upholstery, you fucking old sodomite, you.’ Dai beamed his glass eye, catching the light and giving him a positively devilish air – like a picture mothers show their children captioned ‘Do not accept sweets from this man.’ ‘Well,’ said George, ‘“that’s the sand in the Vaseline,” as an old friend of mine used to say.’

We stopped the car several times on the way to chat to boys and give them cigarettes. Very shy boys. ‘I like the ones who blush,’ George said. ‘I remember I used to fuck the blushes off their faces and when they said, “Madre mio. Oh! Oh! Please don’t,” that’s when I used to shove it up.’ He cackled and then looked sad at the memory he’d conjured up. [...]

A very attractive fifteen-year-old boy, wearing nothing but a pair of red bathing-drawers, served us. His name was Abdul-Aziz. He had a jut on his bum. His face unfortunately was marred by an eruption of spots. Dai went away to arrange for his car to be looked after and came back saying a group of boys who had seen us arrive had asked if I was English and ‘does he do things?’ which is a very sweet thing to ask.[4] ‘Very sensible too,’ Dai said. ‘They’re practical people you know.’ [...]

I swam back to find George, Dai and Kenneth sitting under a vast striped umbrella, eating. Abdul-Aziz still served in his red drawers. He brushed up against me as he served, giving the passing of a sardine a sensitiveness all of its own. ‘Does he rub up against you?’ I asked the others. ‘No,’ Kenneth said. ‘Oh,’ I said, ‘I thought it part of the service.’ ‘That boy,’ said George, ‘is the boy of Pete Churchill.’ ‘So you’d better watch out,’ Kenneth said. ‘Oh you don’t have to worry,’ said George, stuffing potato salad down him. ‘Take him down to the cabin and fuck him.’ It was a perfect day. I bathed again later. Saw Ian Horobin. ‘He’s wearing exactly the same get-up as in Tangier,’ Kenneth said. ‘Perhaps he’s come from the sea.’ ‘He certainly looks like the fucking beast from 20,000 fathoms,’ G. said, casting a malevolent sneer in the direction of Ian. ‘Do you want to see the Sultan’s Palace?’ Dai said, ‘But when the boys here ask you if you want to see the Sultan’s Palace, they take advantage of you in there.’ ‘He means they get you inside and get you to fuck them,’ George said. ‘There was one man, I believe,’ Dai said, ‘who complained that a boy who had taken him into the palace had come too quickly. “Well have me, then,” the custodian said. And I’m told he was most satisfactory.’ ‘Spunk all over the Sultan’s fixtures,’ George said. ‘The buggery always stops at the Sultan’s Palace.’

[...] Larbi rang at the door. He went into the salon and spoke to Kenneth, and then he came and said, ‘You like my friend?’ ‘Who?’ I said. ‘Mon ami.’ ‘Yes,’ I said, ‘He very good boy,’ Larbi said. ‘You like l’amour for him?’ ‘When?’ ‘Today. I fetch him from The Pergola.’ He went away and returned with the boy. He looked like the kind of boy I used to go to school with. He was fifteen or sixteen. His name was Mohammed. I started to call him Mohammed Swinnerton to distinguish him from the rest. We sat drinking tea. K. and L. went off into ‘la casa’. I got Mohammed Swinnerton on the couch and we kissed. His tongue hovered over my lips and I got harder. So I took him into the bedroom. He was very shy. I thought go George Greeves and shy boys. We lay on the bed in our underpants. Then I took his off. Later my own. He had a beautiful body and a nice prick. I did the full stint this time. Later we showered and went into the salon, where, with my arm around him, he smoked a cigarette. I began to play with his cock. I got a hard on and then, quite suddenly, he fell asleep. I lay on the couch with him for a long time while waiting for Ken and Larbi. [pp. 177-80]

 

Wednesday 24 May

Went home. Kenneth’s boils are a bit better. Larbi arrived at five with no Mohammed Swinnerton. ‘Boy crazy, he go off to eat with English tourists.’ So no boy. ‘I got another boy for you. He’s outside. Please look.’ So I looked outside, and there was a not bad boy – nothing to give your cock the shrinkings, but nothing to start the balls rolling. I looked back. ‘Not today,’ I said. Larbi nodded. ‘Ok. I tell boy,’ he said. He leaned round the door and shouted something in Arabic. It sounded like some phrase like, ‘You won’t be needed tonight.’ The boy pissed off. Larbi and Kenneth and I sat talking, and then Larbi and. K. went into the bedroom to have sex, and I sat writing this diary. […]

We sat at the boulevard and drank Coca-Cola. We were joined by Frank and Kevin (the man everyone calls a millionaire). Very boring conversation, but a succession of very pretty boys to look at passing at intervals. And all available! [p. 184]

 

Thursday 25 May

[…] On the way to The Windmill I met the boy I’d had at Bill Fox’s and at the baths. I had already warned Kenneth that I intended bringing him back if I met him. ‘Hallo,’ he said. ‘Hallo,’ I said. ‘L’amour today?’ I said. ‘Today,’ he nodded slowly. ‘What time?’ ‘Come to The Windmill at two o’clock.’ He nodded and went away.

[...] I then saw Mohammed (the one that was coming at two — he wore a yellow jersey and, to distinguish him from the rest of his kind, I’ll call him Mohammed Yellow-jersey). So I had a couple of poached eggs and a coffee, and nodded for Mohammed Yellow-jersey to follow.
  

                                                   Tangier in the 1960s

I went onto the Avenue d’Espagne and Mohammed Yellow-jersey was still following. I let him in and he sat on my bed smiling. Kenneth came out of the bathroom. I went in for a shit. When I came back Kenneth was sitting in a dressing-gown. ‘Do you want tea?’ I said to Yellow-jersey. ‘Yes, please,’ he said. I made a pot. He had condensed milk in it and three spoonfuls of sugar. Kenneth and I talked. He had a piece of hash cake. I wasn’t going to risk it fucking up the sex. I took a couple of valium though. I usually find a mild muscular relaxant helpful. I took the boy (who is about fifteen) into the room. We took off our clothes and lay together. I stroked him, kissed his nipples. When I’d got a  spanking good hard on, I turned the lad over and, using a little grease mixed with my spit, I put my prick up his arse. I found he wouldn’t take the cock up the arse. He cried out as it went in. But he allowed me to have the prick between the buttocks which, as I fucked, he agitated in a most alarming way. At this point I, my hand well-greased, put my hand under him and took his medium-to-large tool in my hand. While I fucked him, I pressed his prick between my clenched fist and had a truly satisfactory orgasm.

We dozed for fifteen minutes or so and then he had a douche. We smiled a lot and I gave him six dirham and he asked for another, so I gave him seven. We displayed more affection and then he went and drenched himself with a cheap kind of eau-de-cologne which Kenneth had bought for midge bites. I made a pot of tea, had a largish slice of hashish cake and came into the living-room. ‘Very good,’ I said to Kenneth. ‘Just my type.’ […]

Met Ian Horrible. ‘How are you?’ I said. ‘Alive, I regret to say,’ he said. ‘Has anything exciting been happening?’ he said, and I told him of my Yellow-jersey episode. ‘Yes,’ he said, ‘he’s quite a nice kid.’ ‘A very valuable addition to my collection,’ I said. He chortled to himself and gave a spin into a café, leaving me relieved by his departure. I found Ken and Larbi still in the bedroom when I returned. After a while Larbi came out quite naked parading up and down in front of the long mirror in the hall admiring himself. I gave Kenneth the tablets. He took two and said they gave him the most odd feeling on top of the hashish.

We sat talking of how happy we both felt and of how it couldn’t, surely, last. We’d have to pay for it. Or we’d be struck down from afar by disaster because we were, perhaps, too happy. To be young, good-looking, healthy, famous, comparatively rich and happy is surely going against nature, and when to the above list one adds that daily I have the company of beautiful fifteen-year-old boys who find (for a small fee) fucking with me a delightful sensation, no man can want for more. [...]

[After dinner] Sat on the boulevard at the Café de Paris and, at ten, rose to go, only to meet Nigel, Frank and Kevin who persuaded us to stay a little longer. In the re-allotment of seats, I sat next to a rather stuffy American tourist and his disapproving wife. They listened to our conversation and I, realising this, began to exaggerate the content. ‘He took me right up the arse,’ I said, ‘and afterwards he thanked me for giving him such a good fucking. They’re most polite people.’ The American and his wife hardly moved a muscle. ‘We’ve got a leopard-skin rug in the flat and he wanted me to fuck him on that,’ I said in an undertone which was perfectly audible to the next table. ‘Only I’m afraid of the spunk you see, it might adversely affect the spots of the leopard.’ Nigel said quietly, ‘Those tourists can hear what you’re saying.’ He looked alarmed. ‘I mean them to hear,’ I said. ‘They have no right to be occupying chairs reserved for decent sex perverts.’ And then with excitement I said, ‘He might bite a hole in the rug. It’s the writhing he does, you see, when my prick is up him that might grievously damage the rug, and I can’t ask him to control his excitement. It wouldn’t be natural when you’re six inches up the bum, would it?’

                          Joe Orton

The American couple frigidly paid for their coffee and moved away. ‘You shouldn’t drive people like that away,’ Nigel said. ‘The town needs tourists.’ ‘Not that kind, it doesn’t,’ I said. ‘This is our country, our town, our civilisation. I want nothing to do with the civilisation they made. Fuck them! They’ll sit and listen to buggers’ talk from me and drink their coffee and piss off." ‘It seems rather a strange joke,’ Frank said with an old school—teacher’s smile. ‘It isn’t a joke,’ I said, ‘there’s no such thing as a joke.’

Nigel, who was drinking some strange brandy, got very excited by a girl who passed. She looked like a boy. She was German. We discussed women for a bit and I wrote them off as a mistake. ‘Who wants a girl to look like a boy?’ I said. ‘Or a boy to look like a girl? It’s not natural.’ ‘I really think, Joe,’ Nigel said, ‘that you shouldn’t bring nature into your conversation quite so often, you who have done more than anyone I know to outrage her.’ ‘I’ve never outraged nature,’ I said. ‘I’ve always listened to her advice and followed it to wherever it went.’ We left at eleven. I feel so content. [pp. 184-7]

 

Friday 26 May

[...] I have frequently given my best sexual performance with people I didn’t love, in fact rather despised. I have fucked the arses off aging queens quite easily, but found a beautiful young boy often too difficult to come, because I loved him too much. [p. 188]

 

Saturday 27 May

[...] At three, a knock at the door. It was Mohammed Yellow-jersey. Of course, as he hasn’t a watch he has no way of telling the time. I let him in. The attractive, curly-headed seventeen-year-old also outside and pointed to himself. I shook my head and closed the door. He stayed there for ages waiting. Mohammed very amused. Kenneth not so. ‘What is he waiting out there for?’ he said. ‘It really doesn’t matter,’ I said. ‘He can wait, nobody in this alley sees what’s going on.’ I took Mohammed Yellow-jersey into the bedroom after he’d smoked one of Kenneth’s cigarettes. We had a very exciting sex bout. We were both sweating and exhausted. He almost immediately fell into a deep sleep, snuggling close to me. After a few minutes I also fell asleep and we were awakened an hour and a half later by Kenneth hissing through the door, ‘What have you done in there?’ ‘Nothing,’ I said. My Yellow—jersey and I showered and I said I’d see him on lundi. As I was talking to small Absolem and Mustapha on the boulevard, a Moroccan man passed and said to them, ‘Hassissi,’ at which they looked sheepish. I suppose it’s the equivalent of bum-boy. In a civilisation where homosexuality is frowned upon, whether active or passive, I can’t think of an English equivalent of luart. Larbi frequently admits to luart but not hass-hass, though, in fact, I have been up him as he must very well know.

Met Paddington [Orton's nickname for a Moroccan friend]. He said he’d been smoking Kif. He walked with us for a little. He talked of sex. I spoke of vaseline, which he agreed was good as a hair tonic also. ‘Spit,’ he said ‘is good with a boy, but sometimes the mouth is dry and it’s impossible to make enough.’ He then said, ‘When I go into the country I usually take a piece of soap.’ ‘But isn’t it painful?’ ‘Yes,’ he admitted, ‘it can be painful.’ He said he was going to Spain in a few weeks. ‘Many lovely boys there,’ he said smiling. ‘Seventeen, eighteen, I have fucked many Spanish boys.’ […]

Went to dinner with Nigel. […] He said that El Aioun was the place for boys, ‘and for tea also, I believe,’ he said. ‘I like young boys.’ ‘How young?’ I said. ‘Oh very young,’ he said. ‘But how young?’ I pressed. ‘Twelve?’ ‘Oh no,’ he said. ‘About fourteen.’ ‘Oh, perfectly natural,’ I said. ‘I think I have finally settled for fifteen. This is because my Yellow-jersey is fifteen, though, mind you, I lust for Mustapha and he can’t be more than fourteen. I think it a little indiscreet to bring him back to the house, so I shall have him in a cabin one day. If his prick is as undeveloped as last year, I shall know that he is not fourteen.’ ‘What will you do then?’ Nigel said. ‘I shall leave it for a year or two,’ I said. ‘Like the peaches on a sunny wall,’ Kenneth said. [pp. 189-90]

 

Monday 29 May

[...] We got to Chechaouen at about two o'clock. It's perhaps the most beautiful town I've ever seen. [...] We arrived at the Rif. A double room was fourteen dirhams. Larbi put his bag with Kenneth's in the double room. "There isn't going to be any pretence," Kenneth said as the page led me to a single room. [...]

After wandering about and taking a few photographs, we met a boy of about fifteen. He was dark and on his upper lips the first downy hairs of a schoolboy moustache. His name, inevitably, was Mohammed. He took us to the spring and we sat at a café among the trees. […] we smoked [Kif], with intervals, for a couple of hours. […] Mohammed was suddenly very provocative and, as we left the café, plucked a sprig of jasmine from a nearby bush and presented it to me. […]

Le petit marocain by Gerda Wegener

Mohammed took us to a café where, as expected, we had to witness a dance by a Moroccan queer. […] I bought a postcard of the dancer and a small boy, also dressed as a girl. ‘That boy is good for fuck,’ Mohammed said pointing to the boy in the picture. ‘Quel age?’ I said. Mohammed shrugged his shoulders. ‘Perhaps ten,’ he said. He went on to say that the boy had been had by most of the male population in the town. ‘You like this boy for l’amour?’ Larbi said, nodding at Mohammed. ‘OK’, I said, feeling most unsexy and half asleep. Larbi spoke to Mohammed who said it wasn’t possible for him to come to the hotel. The patron wouldn’t let guests take boys back. However, he said, he’d be delighted to come to Tangier and sleep with me there. I told Larbi to explain that I was going on Sunday, and for Mohammed to come after I came back from London. ‘OK, this boy say he come June 8th,” Larbi said. We went back to the hotel. [...] Kenneth told me later that he and Larbi had both found coming very difficult under Kif. It took about three quarters of an hour to come. Under those circumstances mutual masturbation is all that could reasonably be accomplished. The idea of fucking for three quarters of an hour solid is ridiculous, I said, unless you were a trained gymnast. [pp. 193-4]

 

Wednesday 31 May

[...] Mohammed Yellow-jersey [...] arrived covered with sand. He went into the bathroom and washed his face. I suggested he wash his feet which were coated in sand. He did and we went into the bedroom where we had very exciting sex. Very goatish. He smelt like he needed a bath and I had been sunbathing all morning and was sweating. We both looked scruffy and our fucking matched our appearance. [pp. 195-6]

 

Saturday 3 June

[...] Larbi arrived at three. Yellow-jersey arrived and had tea. Yellow-jersey and I had it off in the bedroom. How incredible it is, I thought later as I watched him take a shower, to really see a nude fifteen-year-old. That small waist, sudden jutting of the bum; it wasn’t just sex, it was an aesthetic experience. Sitting in the bath, he looked as if he were on canvas by a French impressionist — some painter of the stature of Renoir. There was a faint flush of hair in the small of his back, spreading out to the top of the buttocks. He stood quite naturally and unselfconsciously towelling himself and I thought that nothing ages one more than the sight of one’s juniors, if they’re beautiful in the nude. I glanced into the mirror recognising at once that I was old enough to be the boy’s father. Larbi and Yellow-jersey soon left after sex. [p. 199]

 

Kenneth Halliwell, 1967

Wednesday 7 June

[...] Got home to be greeted by the Fatima, Kenneth, Larbi and the boy from Chechaouen (Mohammed Ali). […] Mohammed Ali had arrived a couple of days ago and Kenneth has started having him (on a purely wanking basis). ‘He’d be no good for you,’ Kenneth said, ‘because he won’t turn over.’ ‘How do you know,’ I said. ‘Well, Kevin said that none of them from there will turn over.’ ‘Kevin is a foolish queen and so are you,’ I said, in sudden rage. I didn’t want Mohammed Ali but it was tiresome to find Kenneth having him. ‘I am not taking Larbi off your hands,’ I said, ‘I am not having any more of your poxy cast-offs like Mohammed.’ ‘Oh, about Mohammed Khomsi,’ Kenneth said. ‘He’s a police informer. Don’t have anything else to do with him. I am sure he told the police about Mustapha and Absolem last year.’

Went down to The Windmill. Had a meal. Showed The Sunday Times with my picture around and then went home to bed. Was woken up at 5.30 by Kenneth tripping in with Mohammed Ali. I was lying naked in bed and I suppose because of the nervous excitement of the last few days, and the plane journey, I suddenly felt very depressed. Was curt with Mohammed A. who started stroking me. ‘Tell your stupid whore to leave me alone,’ I said, sulking, to Kenneth. ‘I don’t want boys brought to me when I am lying naked and distraught.’ Kenneth and the boy went away. Later in the day at the Alhambra we met Nigel and an American […]

 

Sunday 11 June

[...] Nigel took me up to his house in his car. On the way, a boy made an ambiguous gesture in my direction. ‘Was he spitting at me?’ I said recalling the political situation.[5] ‘No,’ said Nigel, ‘he was blowing you a kiss.’ I’m glad things have returned to normal. [...]

Yellow-jersey came. […] I took his clothes off. And explored his body. I fingered his buttocks. He became very excited. The hashish had really worked rather well. Giving me incredible confidence. I turned him over, admired the shape of his back, the beautiful shape that you have to be fourteen to have. His buttocks, which weren’t dark at all, but had a creamy look, rose very sharply from his waist. He lay his face on the pillow. I put my prick up as far as he would allow and fucked solidly for three quarters of an hour. Finally I came, shooting between his buttocks all over the bedspread. […] Not for the first time I reflected that having had a boy of his age in England I’d spend the rest of my time in terror of his parents or the police. At one moment with my cock in his arse, the image was, and as I write still is, overpoweringly erotic, and I reflected that whatever the Sunday papers have said about Crimes of Passion [plays by Orton] was of little or no importance compared with this. [pp. 206-7]

 

Wednesday 14 June

I went down to the Windmill. Didn’t bathe. Saw a very pretty boy of about eleven. He kept rolling over in the sand, showing first his cock and then his arse. But I had Yellow-jersey coming at three. He arrived at 3:40. He lay on the bed smiling, a ludicrous parody of sexual invitation. I locked the door of the bedroom and had a fleeting moment of indulging in illicit pleasures triggered off, I suppose, by the turning of the key in the lock. I picked up a towel and put it on the bedside table. ‘La creme,’ Yellow-jersey said, his eyes half-closed. I took the vaseline from the drawer and took his clothes off. I played with his cock, in order to excite myself, not him. He hugged me suddenly and said he’d been tossed off by an English tourist. ‘Where?’ I said. He looked puzzled. ‘Un Anglais,’ he made the gesture of masturbation — ‘moi — la toilette.’ ‘La plage,’ I said. He nodded, very pleased. ‘Did he pay you dirham?’ I said. ‘Yes,’ he said. He kissed me and we both laughed. I didn’t ask how much the English tourist had paid him, because it was probably more than I do. ‘Surely though,’ Kenneth said later, ‘it isn’t necessary to have boys in lavatories in this country.’ […] Yellow-jersey and I were naked. I was fully awake. I turned him over, knelt above him, greased my cock with vaseline and spit, stroked his buttocks and wiped the residue of grease on my hand. Yellow-jersey, his face on the pillow, his eyes closed, gave a little moan. My cock was very hard. I fucked for about twenty minutes. […]

At the end of twenty minutes, I got up and had a piss. When I came back, Yellow-jersey was laying on his stomach with his arms spreadeagled like young Christ crucified seen from the back without his cross. I straddled the boy, put my cock in again and fucked him for another ten minutes or so — coming at last with enormous physical and mental pleasure. Yellow-jersey’s cock was still hard as I reached round and felt it. He kissed my cheek. We lay like this for several minutes as my cock cooled off. After we'd wiped ourselves down and he’d said, 'No,' much to my relief, at my suggestion of tossing him off, he repeated, “La toilette, Anglais.’ I gave him a cigarette. He said his name was Mohammed, what was my name? ‘Joe,' I said. He looked puzzled. 'Yusuf – Arab – Joe – Anglais?’ He paused and reflectively stroked my cock. ‘Hallo Joe,’ he said. “Hallo Mohammed,’ I said. After half an hour we got up and had a shower. He said his underpants - which he also used for swimming - were no good. They were made of crêpe-de-chine and much too large for him. When we'd showered I gave him the pair of red jockey pants which I'd bought him at Marks and Sparks. He put them on and examined himself in the mirror – posed – admired – said ‘very good,’ and accepted them. He looked very pretty in them. He said he’d throw his old ones away. As he was leaving I told him to come on Friday, We are having G. Greeves here for tea tomorrow. [pp. 209-10]

 

Thursday 15 June

Larbi arrived. Kenneth went off with him. ‘Are those two having trade?’ George said. ‘I expect so,' I said. ‘I had trade with a lad once,' said George, 'who was later struck by lightning.’ I laughed. “It's true,' George said. ‘He was under a tree and he was struck by lightning?’ He paused reflectively. 'Though as I recall, he liked women as well, so perhaps he was killed for that.’ He laughed. ‘Oh yes, the Prince of Darkness took him.’ He shook his head sadly, ‘He was a good little fuck though? [p. 212]

 

Friday 16 June

Mohammed Ali turned up at eleven (the Fatima had left by then). I said 'Quel age? He said, ‘Dix-neuf.’ ‘Dix-fucking-neuf?’ I shouted. 'Nineteen?' ‘Oui,’ he said, looking obviously no more than sixteen. ‘You couldn’t come to England anyway,’ I said, ‘because in England you have to be twenty-one.’ He smiled, shook hands and said, 'Amigos,' in a hushed tone and lowered his eyes. ‘You See, the whole point of my penis,’ I said, ‘is to look into your eyes and say you're mine.’ This with a sort of casual, finishing-off-the-evening voice. ‘That is good,’ he said, ‘to have amigos.’ I eventually said, ‘Wipe that silly grin off your face and put it on my arse.’ ‘Harse,’ he said.

We had managed sardines and bread and tea - Kenneth took the pest’s photographs. He looks like a pretty monkey. He borrowed my suntan oil and he spilt a great pool. He disappeared with Kenneth. At three Yellow-jersey arrived. ‘Yellow-jersey?’ I said through the bedroom door. ‘Oui,’ Kenneth said. There was an extraordinary pause. I had been eating the cake for two hours, during which time something looking like a lettuce buzzed past my ear. Kenneth said, ‘Let him in then,’ in an authoritative voice. I let Yellow-jersey in. He had to have a foot-bath because of his feet, covered with sand, ‘as per usual,’ my old mother would have retorted. I had to fuck on spit because the vaseline was in the other bedroom. After about twenty minutes or so I stopped, and seeing the red underpants still round his ankles, I pulled them up over the boy’s knees so that if I lifted myself I could see my cock going in and out. I suddenly wanted to piss. I went into the bathroom. ‘I demand that vaseline,’ I said. ‘I don't care who you are, you’re to hand it over at once.’ The door suddenly opened and Kenneth appeared. He said, ‘You’ve been in there for an hour, and you’re just asking for vaseline.’ He handed me the jar. I closed the door. I found no difficulty whatsoever in getting a hard on. I pushed it in. I pulled the drawers up higher and, as I fucked him, my balls occasionally brushed against the material and I experienced great delight. Was this, I wondered, the result of my halls touching the material - i.e. purely physical, or was it - giving the whole idea a totally unexpected twist – the result of ‘fetishist’ touching, as with religious awe, the object of his adoring. ‘Oh, Oh!’ I cried. ‘You come?’ Yellow-jersey expressed considerable surprise. I kissed his back and neck and came my belly-full up his reeking arse. ‘Oh, Oh!’ I said. ‘I’m inclined to favour the spiritual values nowadays when so many persons are queer.’ ‘Good fuck,’ he said. I nodded. He wiped us down, he was now off-hard and didn’t want to be tossed off – had it off in the loo, I expect. He hugged me and kissed my shoulders. After a while he got up and had a douche. Kenneth took photos of him in his red drawers. I told him to come again tomorrow. He padded and beamingly said goodbye to Ken. [p. 213]

 

Orton on his Tangier patio terrace, 1967

Saturday 17 June

‘If the rain is coming down at this rate when Mohammed jersey arrives,’ I said, ‘it will be my fantasies come true,’ Kenneth stared blandly, the Kif working. ‘You're well aware of my rain obsession,’ I said. ‘It's always in the rain that the soldier/engineer/apprentice/lorrydriver/master sergeant in the Marines fucks the schoolboy/errand boy or mentally defective farm labourer recently released from borstal.’ ‘Isn’t it in the back of a lorry or in a shed though,’ Kenneth said. ‘Yes,’ I said, ‘but with a fifteen-year-old boy and the rain, two-thirds of the fantasy is reality, the setting is of minor importance.’ Didn't take any cake today. It was pouring with rain at 2.30, when Yellow-jersey arrived.

 

Sunday 18 June

Woke feeling a little better, though dazed. Rain has stopped. Sky still cloudy though. Fell asleep on the couch at ten-thirtyish and dimly heard the doorbell ring at eleven. It was Mohammed Ali (from Chechaouen). The Fatima let him in. He came over and kissed my cheek. I pretended to be asleep in order to avoid talking to him. Dozed off. At twelve, Kenneth woke me. ‘Are you on Kif as well?’ [215] he asked. ‘You’re not spending the whole of the day in a coma, are you?’ I got up. Shaved. Heard M. Ali rattling the door of the bathroom. Called, ‘Goodbye, you tiresome bore,’ in a loud merry voice. ‘Goodbye bore,’ he said, shuffling away. After I’d shaved, I went into the living-room. The Fatima had gone early. ‘What a pest that boy is,’ Kenneth said. ‘It’s God’s judgement on you for treachery,’ I said. ‘If you hadn’t had him whilst I was away, he would have come for me, and this would now have been my problem and not yours.’ I sat down in the sun, which was shining hazily. ‘What would you have done?’ he said. ‘I would have got rid of him by now,’ I said. ‘He’s like Mohammed Goldtooth (Khomsi), boring the tits off everyone with his constant jibber.’ [pp. 214-5]

 

Monday 19 June

Mohammed (Chechaouen) came round at three. Kenneth got rid of him. Yellow-jersey came at 3.20. I had a shower, as I'd been sitting in the sun. He sat in the bedroom smoking. As I'd been eating bits of cake since one, I was feeling very good. The whole process of taking a shower, and later undressing Yellow-jersey, was very sensual. I fucked him twice today. [p. 216]

 

Wednesday 21 June

Boring Mohammed Ali turned up this morning before the Fatima. He spoke to Kenneth and, on being lent a pair of bathing trunks, went away. The Fatima arrived next. The last ring on the bell was Larbi. The Fatima let him in and he stayed till three. Most of the time he was asleep on the sofa. He said he'd spent the night at The Pergola beach café. ‘No good,’ he said, ‘many mosquitoes’. He was very taken by my nude snaps. Kept shaking his head and laughing. He wants to have nude ones of himself. Ken and Larbi went to the bedroom. After a few seconds Kenneth reappeared. ‘Where's that ring Kevin gave to you?’ he said. ‘I’m wearing it,’ I said. ‘Give it to me,’ said K.[6] ‘You're not going to teach that child your foul tricks?’ I said with wonder in my voice, unlocking the band of twisted ebony. 'Oh it's a marvellous new discovery,' Kenneth said, taking the ring from me.

Kenneth says that Larbi, after viewing the strange ring with suspicion, consented to have it put on and be wanked. ‘After two or three strokes he was squealing “good, good” ’. He insisted that we buy three in London, one for Kenneth, one for me and one for himself. ‘He's addicted to it,’ Kenneth said. [p. 217]

 

Friday 23 June

Larbi arrived at nine o’clock this morning. I said, ‘This one small boy. You fuck him?’ ‘Yes,’ Larbi said. ‘Me fuck him right in,’ I said. I demonstrated. ‘You fuck him properly?’ Larbi  hesitated and said, ‘No right in.’ So the thirteen-year-old can’t take it properly. ‘You’d better be careful,’ Kenneth said. ‘You’ll look fine if you hurt him and he’s pouring with blood.’ This later at The Windmill. ‘I wish you wouldn't spread these rumours,’ I said angrily. ‘Anyone would think I made a habit of splitting young kids’ arses. It’s quite easy to tell when you’re hurting a boy. They're not dumb, you know.’

[...] M. (Chechaouen) arrived. Spent the next hour listening to his prattle. He is such a boring boy. Every sentence begins, ‘How much cost this?’ Simply because it is one of the few sentences he can speak. Mohammed Yellow-jersey arrived at 2.30. I sent him away for an hour. Nasser turned up at three. I gave him ten dirham. Five for some hashish and five for himself. He said he saw boy ‘Yallow’ waiting round the corner. ‘He your friend?’ he said. ‘Yes,’ I said. ‘Me like boy. Very good harse.’ A lot of laughing and then he went. M. Yellow rang about half an hour after. I’d taken some of the cake before. Yellow washed his feet which were covered in sand. Went to bed. I turned him over and put my prick in. It was like putting it into a sandpit. The little lad had an arsehole like a section of the Sahara. Looking very foolish, he got up and went to the bathroom to wash at the bidet. He came back. We began again. This time there was a violent ring at the door - very disturbing. Nobody answered it. Finally we had a very exhilarating session. I felt as though I were about to pass out. Yellow-jersey fell asleep (or appeared to do so) increasing to an alarming degree the fantasy of fucking him whilst he was unconscious against his will. [pp. 217-8]

 

Sunday 25 June

Even sex with a teenage boy becomes monotonous. Ecstasy is as liable to bore as boredom. [pp. 219-20]

 

Monday 26 June

[…] Yellow-jersey came in the afternoon. Spent about an hour and a half in bed during which time we fell asleep, both during and after sex. I hadn’t taken any hash. Larbi has invited Kenneth and I to have lunch with his family tomorrow. [p. 220]

 

Tuesday 27 June

Tangier

[...] There was an incredible scene at The Pergola today,’ Nigel said. ‘A fourteen-year-old blond English boy came in with four big Moroccans. He was holding court.’ ‘Fourteen?’ I said. ‘Yes,’ Nigel said, ‘I was told he was fourteen. He is here with his mother.’ ‘Are the Moroccans fucking him?’ I said. ‘Well, I don’t know,’ said Nigel. ‘I suppose he will get fucked if he carries on like that.’ Larbi left shortly after this conversation. Nigel expressed an interest in M. Ali (Chechaouen). Kenneth, anxious to sell his share of the boy, said, ‘Yes he’s very good in bed, and he’ll do anything.’ ‘How do you know?’ I said. ‘You’ve only asked him to do so little.’ Kenneth said, ‘Oh, all the boys will do anything.’ ‘They won’t,’ I said. ‘There’s a lot of things they won’t do.’ It was very irritating to be told by someone who likes being masturbated that the boys ‘will do anything.’ ‘You said yourself that he wouldn’t take it. It was your excuse for having him in the first place.’

Kenneth became violently angry shortly after this and attacked me, hitting me about the head[7] and knocking my pen from my hand. He left the room [...]. I'd just settled down for the night when the door opened and Kenneth entered. I was selfish. I couldn't bear not to be the centre of attention. I was continually sneering at him for only wishing to be masturbated while I was 'virile' in fucking boys. [pp. 221-2]

 

Wednesday 28 June

[...] The fourteen-year-old-boy appeared with a Moroccan. He wasn’t good-looking. A little queen, in fact. I’d like to fuck him though, just because he’s fourteen and blond. Kenneth began an argument. ‘He’s awful,’ he said in loud irritating tones. ‘I can’t understand anyone going with him.’ ‘If he takes it and he’s fourteen,’ I said, ‘I can see perfectly why the Moroccans are interested and I would be too.’ An elderly queen leaned across and said, 'He's a raver. My Ali had him and said, "He has a prick that big" - he measured an impossible length (about two feet) on his arm. Ali said he got it right up.'There was a licking of lips all round. [...]

We went to Le Claridge for dinner. Dai arrived at 8.30 and said that George [Greaves] would be late. [...] At this moment a little boy, no more than nine, entered the restaurant and saluted Dai with 'Donne moi une cigarette.' Dai looked quickly around the restaurant and said, 'You shouldn't come here, you know.' He passed the boy a cigarette and he scampered away. 'They've never come in her before,' Dai said, shaking his head. 'He's very naughty.'

When George came in, we told him of the incident and Dai's evident discomfort. [...] 'There's Dai's little cock-sucker,' he said, as a small boy passed the restaurant window. 'Now George,' said Dai primly, 'concentrate on the menu or we'll never get served.' [p. 223-4]

 

Thursday 29 June

[...] At home at about three I photographed Hamid [Yellow-jersey] in the nude from the back. 'You can take it to Boots to be developed,' Kenneth said. Took Yellow-jersey into the bedroom. l’d taken too much cake and so the sex, though good, went on too long. I was fucking for an hour. Yellow-jersey very upset because I’m leaving. He doesn’t believe I’ll return. October seems so far off. Such a lot of things can happen.

 

Friday 30 June

Orton, Halliwell, Nigel, Larbi and Yellow-jersey were in the lodging of the first two, who were about to leave for London:

When M. Ali (Chechaouen) arrived, Kenneth gave him a nylon shirt. General hilarity. Nigel v. schoolboyish. His eyes shining. 'I'm going to make a pass at M. Ali,' he said, 'he has a very pretty bottom.' I took Yellow-jersey into the bedroom ad gave him a parting gift of fifteen dirham. 'I'll see you in September,' I said. He hugged me and I put my hand down his trousers and stroked his buttocks. He kissed my cheek.

Reginald Allen arrived with the car. Larbi wanted to come to the airport. 'No,' I said, if you come Hamid must come.''Why?' Larbi said. 'Because it isn't fair to take you and not Hamid,' I said. He only wanted to ride in the car to score off Hamid. To prove he ha a closer relationship with us than Yellow-jersey. He's a great show-off, being a couple of years older.

 

London July-August 1967

Tuesday 4 July …

Orton at home

Saw Peggy.[8] She’s quite extraordinary. Being v. sophisticated about my taste ‘for little boys’. Willes has told her this. ‘Well, you’re legal now,’ she said, showing her ignorance. (The homosexual bill becomes law today.)[9] ‘It’s only legal over twenty-one,’ I said, ‘I like boys of fifteen.’ She looked rather bright. Great attempts at modernity. I saw Peter Willes this evening for dinner. ‘Most people are very shocked by paederasty,’ he said. ‘You mustn’t let people know you fuck little boys.’

 

Tuesday 11 July …

Achmed [Ossman, just introduced as an Egyptian journalist] arrived at eight. We went to a pub and talked. He, wary at first, with the present situation vis-à-vis the Arab/ Israel conflict. I said I was pro-Arab and he brightened considerably. He is in favour of Nasser. He says he’s liberalising Egypt. Though, to hear him talk, the liberalising seems to consist mainly of the Arab girls becoming freer sexually. l’m not in favour of this — the more girl—conscious they become out there the less boy—conscious. I received a distinct impression (Achmed being rather middle-class) that boys and hashish are distinctly out of fashion with the trendy Arabs. It’s all whiskey and Western thought. [pp. 237-8]

 

Thursday 27 July,

Describing his arrival to stay with the family of Oscar Lewenstein in Sussex:

We met Oscar’s mother, a small, withered Jewess, and his children Mark (14) and Peter (11). Both were middle-class children. Brought up in a liberal atmosphere. … Neither child was sexually attractive. Mark wore spectacles. Even when he removed them he wasn’t erotic. He was thin, studious, red-haired. I was perfectly safe from his charms for he had none. … Peter was younger. He was depressingly unsexual. [p. 257]

 

July 28 Friday

Describing a visit to a beach in Sussex with Halliwell:

Here and there were numbers of nearly-naked boys. This made me unhappy. After passing a fifteen-year-old lying face-downward, wearing red bathing-drawers, I said, in a rage, ‘England is intolerable. I’d be able to fuck that in an Arab country. I could take him home and stick my cock up him! [p. 259]

Orton drawn by Patrick Procktor, 1967

 

[1] [Book editor's note transposed from the first mention of him on p. 49:] Kenneth Williams (1926- ). Popular comedian and actor. … A good friend of Orton’s … .

[2] [Book editor's note transposed from the first mention of him on p. 84:] Gordon Jackson (1923- ). Actor. Best known to TV audiences as the butler in Upstairs, Downstairs.

[3] George Greeves (1900-1984). Reuters Morocco correspondent. Dai Rees-Davies (1910-1985). Antiquarian. [Book editor's footnotes transposed from the first mention of them on p. 167]
     There is an amusing character sketch of George Greaves (as his surname was usually spelt) in The World, The Flesh and Myself (London: Arcadian Dreams, 2022) pp. 211-13, by Michael Davidson, who knew him for thirty-six years. Some of this is on this webpage.

[4] Orton to Peter Gill, 22 May 1967: ‘The other day I visited a small village about 50 miles from Tangier. I went with a notorious one-eyed paederast. As we got out of the car, we were surrounded by boys. Several of them smiled at me and then spoke to the one-eyed paederast in French. “What did they say?” I asked, when we were away from the boys. “Oh,” he said. “they wanted to know if you were English and did you do things!” I think that’s my philosophy of life from now on: not to look English and not to look as though I do things.’

[5] Israel had just decisively defeated three of its Arab neighbours in the Six-Day War, ad Orton had worried that this would give rise to anti-British feeling in Morocco. Great Britain was widely blamed there for Israel’s existence.

[6] Orton had been given a ring ‘which fitted round the cock, under the balls and is supposed to have a very unusual effect … it had no particular effect on me.’

[7] This was Halliwell’s first attack on Orton’s head, a foreshadowing of his murder. Halliwell’s rage was inspired, significantly, by Orton’s provocative statement which drew attention to Halliwell’s inadequacy. [Book editor's note]

[8] [Book editor's note transposed from the first mention of her on p. 231:] Dame Peggy Ashcroft (1907- ). Actress.

[9] The Homosexual Bill. Became law on 27 July, 1967, made sex in private between two consenting male adults no longer an illegal offence and fixed the age of adulthood at twenty-one. [Book editor's note]

 

 

Comments
Comments of general interest will be collected at Letters To The Editor (some editing may be involved)

 

Daemonic Rise   21 November 2017

And Kenneth rose up against Joe, and slew him, but Joe's hot blood still cries out from a parched ground, like a prick up the bum...

Damn your eyes, Kenneth Halliwell! -- you always were too queer to be trusted.

Any fool can fuck a boy, but if you want proof Joe was no gay Johnny who on occasion o'erflowed the measure, look no further than this diary extract:

"I have fucked the arses off aging queens quite easily, but found a beautiful young boy often too difficult to come, because I loved him too much."

No, not middle-class guilt, but a touch of the Platonic shivers, the Aschenbachian delirium. Only a boy-lover knows that particular soul-slaying score—an aria way above the sensory range of your average lumpen goat-lover.

With most of the swashbuckling pederasts around here, I envy them and want to be them (twice). But with Joe, I make an exception. With Joe, I want to travel back in time and be his boy. What a blast! What a catch for a kid trundling through dreary suburbia like a wax-work wannabe.

Sure, you'd probably never quite snag him, and he'd break your heart, but you'd never forget him, and his incorrigibly boyish smile would brighten your dotage better than any line of dancing daffodils.

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Hitched to a Crock,  5 May 2022

I'd like to know more about Joe Orton's relationship with his mother. It might shed light on his persisting in his relationship with Kenneth Halliwell. Something about these two remind me of Norman Bates and his fright-wig mum. Joe, loveable rogue, was really an eternal adolescent, sporting with other boys in the sort of healthy way that stops a young man drifting into Bates's mummy-fired neurotic sex obsessions. The great missed chance in Joe's life was not to have manned up, left Halliwell, and taken Mohammed “Yellow-jersey” as his beloved.

Although the sexual aspect of their relationship was long over, Halliwell continued to seek total domination of his "son-lover". He wanted to procure Joe's boys and dictate to him what nice boys do in bed (which is certainly NOT to become a man!) Every move of Joe's toward independent manhood sent Mummiwell into a screaming fury until, in a reverse Psycho, the psychotic queen donned the costume of a big man and beat the boy's head in with a hammer.

 

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