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Letter from George Yeats to Thomas MacGreevy. 15 March 1926.[p.1 recto]
I grovel. . Really to do it twice is too much! When I got up from Ballylee on Saturday night I found a letter enclosing one
to Lennox that I had sent in mistakeAs Robinson had written to MacGreevy in a later dated 'Wed.night': 'George was sending me a package today and sent me the
enclosed — obviously for you. I havent told her of her mistake as it would annoy her'. TCD MS 8103/113... I rang up Lennox to find that I had sent yours to him, and I suppose you got one beginning "DearestE." But you havent sent it back! I wrote
to you three about two oclock in the morning of Tuesday last and evidently put all three in the wrong envelopes. I only hope
he Lennox didnt read
ityours before observing that it wasnt for him, for the last remark "undying hate to Hester ". . . however. I wonder if Hester has discovered yet that Mary Grey was staying with him? He said you were sworn to secrecy, but dD oublin has a million tongues and I am sure some of them will blab. .
I shall not be in London in April after all.Yeats had been planning to go to London for the reading of the will of her father's step-aunt Ellen Chapman, Mayor of Worthing.
Probate on the will was granted in February 1926 allowing Yeats to receive the rest of her inheritance from her father's estate.
See Yeats's letter of 5 January 1926. But did I say that already in the last ill-fated letter? I do want to go abroad next September and in
s spite of my devil-great-aunt's death I shant, we shant, be able to do both. The present plan is to go to Ballylee about May 15 till August 1 and then. . . to Spain?. . . in September. If it isnt Spain it will be Italy. And if it isnt Italy it will be France. And it may be neither and none.
I wish you were back here - Willy said last night very solemnly "Now McGreevy is not here we have to do our own gossiping" and there's nobody here now who has more than one idea in six months. .
I drank four gins and its about two weeks ago and in the exhilaration produced thereby read Willy a play and he thought there was a play in itNo play by George Yeats has been discovered - in the first two scenes of it and damned the third fully comprehensively and thoroughly. I had a nervous breakdown for a week[p.2 verso] because when I had read one scene I realised what I was up to - he didnt know I ever did anything - but such small encouragement as I got has rather given me something to do, or to look forward to, not to production because I'm too critical to believe I'll ever do anything good enough, but at any rate to going on and not just getting through each day as it comes.
Lady Wheeler Elspeth de Courcy Wheeler, one of the ladies of the 'Round Table'. Probably a reference to the Arts Club, alluding to Robinson's play of that name. is back, she didnt die in Japan or India as one rather expected. She is looking well and less hysterical and is so amiable and full of love that I suspect she is conscience stricken..
Rummel was here for three days and was reea
ally rather pet and good, Mrs Walter Starkie ( they dined here to meet him ) said to Mrs Bethel Solomons some days later "I was SO afraid of him... he is SO ALARMING... He is S U C H a CHASER of women!" I wonder did she think
he would assault her in our drawing-room? He said of her "She is quite pretty but very hard. I wonder how her husband ever managed to make love to her? But perhaps he
didnt." So that's that.... Anyway at the moment he is very happily married and no one has ever existed before etc etc..
Mary Grey is charming.. delightful.. as a person.. But as an actress!! O GOD... Have you ever seen her act? I didnt too much dislike
her as "Mrs Ushabye" (Heartbreak HouseHeartbreak House by Bernard Shaw was performed by the Dublin Drama League 14 and 15 March, produced by Lennox Robinson. Mary
Grey reprised her role as Hesione Hushabye for this production.) but she was stagey in the English sense to the nth degree; she waved, moaned, schwärmerei'd, gushed and "drew herself up"
threw back her head and yearned, and convinced you that all the time she was really in love with and had never been in love with any one but, her husband. Quite excellent - I'm sure that's what Shaw wanted, but somehow it was undistinguished and a little provincial... though I bit Willy's head off when he said it was. Chiefly because he was exalting Abbey acting against "the English Stage Cliche" and I'd been very cock-a-hoop on Saturday night that Ireland hadnt won the triple [p.3 recto]crown ( football - in case you dont know the allusion - Ireland has won against England, Scotland, but they "couldnt beat little old Wales" - and W. was surprisingly annoyed about it... when I arrived on Saturday night from Gort|he said.. before anything else "Well I suppose you know that Wales beat Ireland and so we havent got the triple crown" ) Anyhow he was most abusive and as he was be
eing really very cross and unpleasant coming home from the Abbey and going on like a thorough paced Irish-anti-Englishman and Mrs Lia (or is it Leah?) Clarke just in front, and she'll probably write and tell you all about it... AND he ge sts so loud when he is excited! Eileen Crowe certainly was what one never thought she could be.. distinguished.. almost aristocratic (in the|intellectual sense).. Will Shields amazing as Captain Shotover, a really beautiful performance, Stevenson. . rather inadequate but odd... I must say the Abbey "got there" and I dont know that Mary Grey did..
Write me a line soon to tell me that you're not too irritated with my stupidity in twice sending you the wrong letter...