T. E. Lawrence to H.A. Ford
Here we are: and as for choking off the Press - he will be my friend for life who finds how to do that. I do nothing - and they talk. I do something - and they talk. Now I am trying to accustom myself to the truth that probably I'll be talked over for the rest of my life: and after my life, too. There will be a volume of 'letters' after I die and probably some witty fellow will write another life of me. In fact there is a Frenchman trying to write a 'critical study' of me, now. They make me retch - and that's neither comfortable nor wholesome. I have thought of everything, I think: to join a newspaper (they do not eat each other, the dogs) - but what a remedy for the disease: to emigrate - but those colonies are as raw as wood alcohol: to commit some disgraceful crime and be put away:- but I have some people whose respect I struggle to keep. I don't know.
Meanwhile here we are. Cattewater treats me very kindly, and I have work enough to keep me pre-occupied: and in the evening a musical box to discourse Beethoven and Elgar; Oh, a super-box, like a W/T set inside, with an exquisite smoothness and fullness of tone. I assure you, it is good.
I read your 9th Symphony score very often, trying to keep pace with the records. Music, alas, is very difficult. So are all the decencies of life.
In August I may be in Malvern. They are doing G.B.S.' new play there on Aug 19th.21.27. and 31. and Heartbreak House, a marvellous work of art, on 23. and 28. and I'd like to hear them. It is not sure, for the Schneider Cup may make me very busy about that time. But if possible I'll be there. Any chance of you? It is near Shrewsbury: perhaps I might come over one night?
That snobbery 'He does not associate with the other airmen, except a few of the more intellectual' - God, it's poisonous. If I could get that reporter by the neck he would want a new one in 5 minutes.
|Last revised:||29 January 2006|
T. E. Lawrence chronology
1888 16 August: born at Tremadoc, Wales
1896-1907: City of Oxford High School for Boys
1907-9: Jesus College, Oxford, B.A., 1st Class Hons, 1909
1910-14: Magdalen College, Oxford (Senior Demy), while working at the British Museum's excavations at Carchemish
1915-16: Military Intelligence Dept, Cairo
1916-18: Liaison Officer with the Arab Revolt
1919: Attended the Paris Peace Conference
1919-22: wrote Seven Pillars of Wisdom
1921-2: Adviser on Arab Affairs to Winston Churchill at the Colonial Office
1922 August: Enlisted in the Ranks of the RAF
1923 January: discharged from the RAF
1923 March: enlisted in the Tank Corps
1923: translated a French novel, The Forest Giant
1924-6: prepared the subscribers' abridgement of Seven Pillars of Wisdom
1927-8: stationed at Karachi, then Miranshah
1927 March: Revolt in the Desert, an abridgement of Seven Pillars, published
1928: completed The Mint, began translating Homer's Odyssey
1929-33: stationed at Plymouth
1931: started working on RAF boats
1932: his translation of the Odyssey published
1933-5: attached to MAEE, Felixstowe
1935 February: retired from the RAF
1935 19 May: died from injuries received in a motor-cycle crash on 13 May
1935 21 May: buried at Moreton, Dorset