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Letter from Thomas MacGreevy to George Yeats. 3 December 1925.

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at 15 Cheyne Gdns S.W. 3.
3rd December, 1925

My Dear George,

A line to thank you for the invitation to the dinnerAt WB's suggestion George had sent MacGreevy an invitation to a dinner on 30 November given by The Irish Literary Society, London in honor of WB Yeats as one of the Society's founders. WB spoke on Irish Education.note I went and sat between Mrs. McNeill and Alec Martin and drank champagne and enjoyed myself. W. B. was very good and I think everyone liked his speech. I had a word with Mrs. Shakespeare and we were to go and see the Brancusis together next SaturdayThere was an exhibition at Knewstub's Chenil Gallery at 183 King's Road, Chelsea, of works by Constantin Brancusi, an associate at this time of the Dadaist movement in Paris and in 1927 the subject of a lawsuit against the U.S. customs authorities who attempted to value his sculpture as raw metal. The suit led to legal changes permitting the importation of abstract art free of duty.note, but I find Chenil has just closed so there's a tie up till I hear from her. I dined with Alec Martin and stopped at his house last night. Its at Sheen—a long way, but no so far as I thought He wanted me to lunch with Ramsay Macdonalds and things Tuesday, and with Sickert to-day, but I am refusing daylight engagements till the end of this week when I shall have some tolerably decent clothes. His wife & family are at Margate and he wants me to go there for a week end. So he is being kind & Mrs. McN asked me to dinner.

I went in to see W. B. Friday night after he arrived and stayed an hour or so. Then he came to Hesters on Sunday night, there was a bit of a crowd, fifteen or sixteen so [p.1 verso]it went well, breaking up into groups which is always goodWB Yeats visited 15 Cheyne Gardens on Sunday 29 November.note. He talked mostly to a Miss Cotteril who is very intelligent, and, I think, likeable, and who knew William Sharp intimately, so he told stories of Fiona, and psychs. and stayed till after 11.30. He asked was I still on the Connoisseur,MacGreevy joined the staff of The Connoisseur. A Magazine for Collectors. Illustrated. in November 1925 as an Assistant Editor, a position he retains until he leaves for Paris in February 1927note and when I said yes, he said he was glad, which I took to mean his view of the poems, and though I had fortified myself beforehand with reminders of Luba &c, I felt a bit disappointed. I'll stick on at this art business till I've paid my debts, then I must quit. If I don't write good poems itself, neither do I write good art criticism. I write personally, and from the point of view of success Bodkin's stuff is more what's wanted. He is frequently in the BurlingtonFounded in 1903,The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs was the leading monthly art periodical, covering the history and criticism of the visual arts with special attention to current developments in all aspects of the fine and decorative arts.note now. I may have sensibility in these things but I know I'll never be an 'expert.' How I wish I was rich — very rich, wouldn't it be nice? I think I'd go home to Kerry probably in spite of everything. One might go for a change to Avila and Paris and Vienna, but one pines for a breath of air sometimes.

Did I tell you about the new ballet? Sergey Pavlovich Diaghilev's Ballet Russes, founded as early as 1909, took the theatrical world of Paris and London by storm, as much for the innovative stage decor of Leon Bakst and Georges Braque as for the extraordinary athletic dancing of Vladislav Nijinsky and the original music of Igor Stravinsky and Andrei Rimsky-Korsakov. The company regularly performed in London, this year at the Coliseum where in late November MacGreevy saw the ballet Zephyr and Flora, the first theatrical composition by composer Vladimir Dukelsky (who also wrote as Vernon Duke), with choreography by Léonide Massine and scenography by Georges Braque, which received its première this season to much critical acclaim.note Its very lovely with a perfect Braque décor, but I saw 'The Three Cornered Hat' again after four years, and was utterly knocked out by it — I mean by Picasso's décorIn May 1917 Picasso's cubist designs for the set and costumes of Sergey Pavlovich Diaghilev's production of Parade, with music by Erik Satie and plot by Jean Cocteau, caused an uproar in Paris; that ballet and his design for The Three Cornered Hat, which premiered at the Alhambra in July 1919 with music by Manuel de Falla and plot by Martinez Sierra, were choreographed by principal dancer Léonide Massine.note. Really he is a terrific great man—don't you think?

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I met those shocking Lynds at the dinner. He made a London Irish speech. They all did except W. B. I was glad for your sake you weren't there. Mrs. Shakespeare told me 'Anyhow they (the Irish) are very amusing.' I told her I'd forgive her.

My love to you all at 82 — &
thanks again


The enclosed suggested by the Picasso & a white-washed wall in a little restaurant about a fortnight ago.MacGreevy probably began this poem, which would eventually be called 'Seventh Gift of the Holy Ghost,' c 19 Novembernote

[p.2 recto] Grianàn The end of Love, Love's ultimate good
Is the end of Love,
And this —
On a towering wall,
Villages in the vast, high, light-beaten plain
And you and I
Thinking of poetry —
The pity we have lost,
The terror found —
The ultimate good.