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Thomas MacGreevy to George Yeats. 30 December 1925.

[p.1 recto]

at 15 Cheyne Gdns
S.W. 3.
30. 12. 25

Dearest George,

Your letter gave me a shock.This letter from George Yeats is no longer extant.note I had no idea you were in so much trouble and I am sorry.Anne Yeats was ill over Christmas with double pneumonia, needing a day and night nurse but vehemently refused to let a strange nurse do much for her. Although George Yeats was involved with the 25th anniversary celebrations for the Abbey Theatre, she was unable to attend the special events while she cared for Anne. In her letter of 31 December 1925, George Yeats would admit that she was 'bored these days seeing no one I want to see and more or less "on duty" all day.'note Poor Anne. It is too bad getting pneumonia at her age (following your precedent isn't it?) not to speak of being laid up at Christmas. I hope she keeps on the mend and that she'll be all right very soon now, and that you'll have a rest—perhaps out of Ireland somewhere. She can't go to BallyleeThoor Ballylee, the Norman tower near Lady Gregory's Coole demesne in County Galway and renovated under George Yeats's direction, had been the Yeats's retreat since 1918.note at this time of year of course. But if she does go away I don't think you should put the care of her on yourself because you will want a rest. Its a pity the Pounds aren't in Paris. It would amuse you. I so liked it this week-end, but if you could go to them at Rapallo surely it would be perfect. Hand W. B. over to Lolly for three weeks !!

I haven't much news. 'The Connoisseur'MacGreevy began working as an art critic for The Connoisseur the previous month. Founded in 1903 as The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs, it was the leading monthly art periodical in London, covering the history and criticism of the visual arts with special attention to current developments in the fine and decorative arts.note sending me out to an exhibition yesterday said "Of course if its advanced don't praise it because the paper doesn't stand for that". I don't know how long it will be[p.1 verso] possible for me to stay or for them to find me out and get rid of me. Even Hester who thought it a heaven sent job now sees the ridiculous joke it is my being on such a paper. But I can't say at the same time that the people on the paper aren't kind. I give it to them there, and all the prostitute in me would like to give in as much as possible to their absurd exaltation of Wheatley's 'Cries of London'The English painter Francis Wheatley's series of paintings entitled 'The Cries of London' was first exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts in 1792. They were his most popular works and were made into engraved prints and sold across Europe.note over a design by Picasso, Matisse or Braque. 'The Nation' In November and December 1925 MacGreevy wrote eight articles for The Nation and Athenaem, a popular general-interest magazine published in London. MacGreevy began writing art reviews for the magazine in June after he was introduced to Leonard Woolf, the literary editor, through T S Eliot. He continued to write for the magazine until he moved to Paris in February 1927.note did me pretty well during November and December and though there is a lull at the moment I think it may be only post-Christmas. But I pine to get to France. London is grand and big and though I dote only on its wonderful river I do understand your love of it, and your desire to get to it from Dublin. Even Alan admits that Dublin was pretty dreary, and Belinda says that she doesn't want to go back now.Alan Duncan and Belinda Duncan neé Atkinson were married in 1924. In early 1925 they moved to Paris and became a part of the Irish expatriate circle that would eventually include Joyce, MacGreevy and Beckett.note I'm glad that Rummel liked it anyhow. Glad too he asked for me though he can be heavyish in conversation to me at least, I being all Mercury and he whatever is the opposite—Neptune is it? something anyhow that moves slowly like the ocean I belong to the air—airy, God help me. What is the lovely quotation about Aranjuez in Germany.In her letter of 15 May 1924 George Yeats first makes reference to the quote 'die schone tage von Aranjuez sin' nun zu ende' (the beautiful days from Aranjuez that now have ended) from Friedrich von Schiller's play Don Carlos. In her letter of 31 December 1925 she suggests that MacGreevy has misremembered the quote's referent. note Is it Philip V pining for home or something? I must learn some more German. I so liked it at Lützern. I'm glad you liked the calendar. It was out of my[p.2 recto] power not to send it. I hadn't thought of doing anything of the sort, but I went into Smith's in Sloane Square for a ball of twine and almost before I saw it my hands had taken it for good and all off the shelf. The net result of the holiday in Milan on me has been to make a holiday, sightseeing or otherwise, by myself unthinkable ever againMacGreevy spent Christmas 1925 in Milan on his own, returning to London via Paris.note. In Paris I stayed at the Duncan's hotel which tied me a bit though they are as good as gold and I love them, but Billy Stewart and I had a few passages together at the Louvre, Invalides &c. By the way has W. B. read Paul Valery's 'Eupalinos'?Paul Valery's Eupalinos, or The Architect was written in 1921. It is a dialogue between Eupalinos, a Greek architect famous for building tunnels and sewers, and Socrates on the nature of art and work.note If not, I think he'd like it and I would send it. I only knew the study of the method of ' Leonard de Vincis 'Paul Valery's Introduction à la méthode de Léonard de Vinci was translated into English by MacGreevy and published by John Rodker in 1929 to favourable reviews.note which I got found some years ago in the vestibule of the Vieux Colombier,The Theatre of the Vieux-Colombier was founded in Paris in 1913 by Jacques Copeaunote and 'The Serpent' which Eliot introduced last year.In December 1924R. Cobden-Sanderson published for the Criterion Mark Wardle's translation of Le serpent, with and an introduction by T S Eliot. noteBut Billy knows Valery and is translating the 'Eupalinos' for Eliot—whom he has seen for five minutes and who is or was a few weeks ago at Turbie Alpes Maritimes-avec femme,Eliot was in the South of France and Ravenna in November 1925 recuperating from a jaw operation and working on lectures he was to deliver at Trinity College, Cambridge. His wife Vivien had been at the Stanboroughs sanitarium in Watford, England since October. By December he had arrived at Rapallo for an extended visit to Ezra Pound.note both of them 'much better' he said in a letter Billy showed me. The fiftieth ballet Diaghileff produces is to be English—music by Constant Lambert.Constant Lambert wrote the music for a ballet which Diaghilev-produced in 1926, Romeo and Juliet, which premiered, not in London, but in Monte Carlo. The Triumph of Neptune by Lord Berners, with choreography by Balanchine was produced for the 1926 London seasonnote. 'Baraban' was the 47th, & there are two more on hand. Constant is full of himself naturally & certainly it must be wonderful to have such a thing happen one at the age of 20. The décor is to be by John based on some designs by a sailor of 1850 or so he found in a pub.The designs for Romeo and Juliet were actually done by Christopher Wood who had been recommended by Picasso.note [p.2 recto] It sounds a little horrid but then most Johnnish things are—he had some lovely flower-pieces at the last ChenilKnewstub's Chenil Gallery was located at 183 King's Road, Chelsea.note show however, not as good as a big Matisse that was there, but in a surprisingly womanish way, pleasant. The

The ladies of the Round Table sound pretty ghastly but what could they be when Elspeth de Courcy Wheeler was one of them?'The Round Table' is a reference to Lennox Robinson's play of the same name. The ladies in question were the members of the United Arts Club Dublin.note I hear she went to Egypt to die. I shall be surprised if she does however. I saw about the Abbey anniversary.The Abbey Theatre celebrated its 21st anniversary in December 1925 with revivals of plays by WB Yeats, John Millington Synge, and Lady Augusta Gregory. That same year the theatre was given an annual subsidy by the Free State, making it the first state-subsidized theater in the English-speaking world.note Why didn't they have a Lennox play? After all he is a director and that seems legitimate enough reason for giving him a show on such an occasion rather than Colum or Colum Conal O Riordan or O'Casey. I hear O'Casey is moving into my old rooms—hêlas. Yet there are good things here even tho' I am in lodgings. Hester was playing Granados, Scriabin and Debussy while I was reading your letter last night, and I do value having that. And I dine with Mrs. Shakespeare 'and a friend'(??) on Friday night. I do like her and she thinks I 'must meet' her daughter when she comes. So thank you.

My love to you all and I hope the troubles will soon be over. Tell Anne especially I sent my love & said she was to get well quick. Michael sounds grand, God bless him.

Tom Mc.

I have a few pieces of gossip that I won't write.

[p.3 recto] Nocturne of the Self-Evident Presence. The lucky inorganic alps rear icily
To heights beneath other heights of great and little stars
To courts beneath other courts that have with walls of white starlight.
The alps stars are their pavements
The valley is an area
I a manservant staring up

But I see no immaculate feet on those pavements
Nor winged cherubs foreshortened
À la Domenichino or Boucher
Nor cars Elijah's or Apollo's
Dashing about or parked

I see only alps, ice, stars and white starlight
In a high and dry silence