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Letter from Thomas MacGreevy to George Yeats. Probably July 1929.

[p.1 recto]

Ecole Normale

Dearest George,

Just a line to say your letter came at the most welcome moment possible. My friend Beckett (who gets more and more like WB at the age of 20) having gone off to spend the summer with his financeé's people in Germany and Joyce's and everyone else having quitted Paris as well I have been melancholy by myself for hours each evening — tho' managing (after a sentimental hour or so when I think I am the loneliest person in all the world etc in the best romantic tradition) to get a little work done on something that I hope you'll find interesting when its done. I am putting irons in fires as busily as I can. No I don't think Lunn will marche this year Betty herself [p.1 verso]having given up Lunning which is to say that she bolted with the Burlingtons expert on Byzantinism, a Serbian friend of Lady Ottoline, Braque, Wyndham Lewis etc, a simple and intelligent creature. Except for the question of access to the children (which the parents are of opinion can be fixed up —they having heard all the pros and cons) she seems much easier than she was as Madame Lunn. "Its much more Betty's milieu" said Ellie very seriously. Jim & she are both charmed with Popovitch —Scratchimoff as Jim called him before settling down to the idea!

But I don't see how we can go Lunning Brian having taken it all pretty badly he has instituted proceedings already. Thanks to W.B. for coping with Russell. I don't know how the thing is going but the Times Litt Supp. had a commercially admirable review a few weeks ago. The Criterion managed to be extremely gracious to me while obviously contemptuous [p.2 recto]of the original which commercially is no use at all. Stearn Tom is a two edged sword.

I had a wonderful inspiration a few weeks ago which tumbled to the ground. I thought of translating Kathleen ni Houlihan and offering it to the Theatre Francais before the arrival of the Irish minister and when I mentioned it to a French friend she said she could secure very favourable consideration of the idea at the theatre for me. Hélas I then discovered that it had already been translated. Still if you could put me in touch with the translators of it and Deirdre I might still be able to make some demarches. The Theatre Francais acts poetic plays superbly and I'm convinced W.B. would like the way they do them there.

Cocteau whom I've been meeting said [p.2 verso]he wanted to send his new book to W.B. He says it wasn't he wrote it all that something queer happened and I told him W.B. could probably explain all about those things. He's a very impressive fellow to meet once or twice, though he might be fatiguing on closer acquaintance. I'm rather terrified of him and keep him at arm's length but the young woman who introduced me to him says he's a perfect dear and that half what people say of him is lies. However it doesn't matter to me. He is very interesting intellectually however little one might want to have to do with him as a man. Speaking of the daemon genie whatever you call it he said — Moi je meurs de ça, Picasso il meurt de ça, Stravinsky au contraire il vit de ça. Romantic but expressive.

Hope there is good news of Anne & Michael.

Love ever and thanks again to you both.


Let me know about the translations. Having no [p.1 recto]money I propose to sit here until the end of the vacation. Après ——?