Letter of the Week

Every week, on this page, we will show a different letter from a selection of letters from Paul O'Prey's books on Robert Graves correspondence In Broken Images and Between Moon and Moon.

Date: 09 FEB 1939

Recipient: Gay, Kenneth (1912-1995)

Location: La Chevrie

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La Chevrie

10 February 1939

Dearest Karl,

Muchisimos abrazos y felicidades de su fiesta [sic].

Well, things are clearing up, aren't they? The signs are good, in a perverse way. It may take some time to clear the Pomegranates out of Spain, but they can't last long even if supported by Italy and Germany. And the Catalans have deserved their humiliation. (We are worried about Joan Junyer. Perhaps he is in France, but he doesn't know our address here.)

A nice thing was that McIntyre of Little, Brown got qualms about the Dictionary because he had showed the plan to two linguistic cranks and asked Laura to answer objections before proceeding. Laura sent him an 18-page foolscap letter by return, like a mule's kick, demolishing the cranks and giving him only till the 15th to decide about getting ahead. (I contributed two pages on the grammatical and vocabularistic errors occurring in the reports by one of the cranks: he had managed to get 14 mistakes on a single sheet!) Yesterday a penitent 34-word cable came from McIntyre admitting that the 'so-called experts' had been answered fully. 'So-called experts' was his own expression of apology. So that's all steady now.

I work at Dictionary every day, and have written about seven or eight new poems since the Collected Poems appeared, and a children's story for the joint book, and finished my part of Swiss Ghost, and done a lot of minor jobs of reading, checking and so on. No new book: but keep busy and am feeling very well and happy. Laura is gradually clearing away her enormous pile of work. It is a great relief to have Lives of Wives and the Greeks and Trojans and David and her Furniture out of the way. At the moment she is writing a very difficult poem: but always a happy thing when she can make time for that.

Did you hear that Barker is going to publish Bottrall's poems? — good, isn't it? I have stopped riding bicycles: roads too bad and too hard when one falls.

Hope you'll be able to sell the Lawrence book and buy yourself something nice with the money.

Love to Marie and Soetkin


Text Copyright © of Robert Graves Copyright Trust