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Updated July 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Mrs Thomas Hardy

Clouds Hill

Easter Monday [22.4.35]

Dear Mrs Hardy

I am sorry I missed you the day you came - as also at Max Gate, a week after, when I tried in turn to find you.  The Indiscretion proved charming. I like the appealing simplicity of the prose... like, and yet a very poor relation, of the sweeping sentences that make up Jude. I understand why he kept it unprinted, yet it is not a thing to be ashamed of. If only T.H. had found time and will to follow up Jude with yet one more work, it would have linked his prose, in power, with his poetry.

You have made a beautiful little book of it. I have enjoyed the reading, and enjoy the possession.

I am worried now about Mother and Bob in China. The troubles are touching their area. They are both longing to come home, now.

Clouds Hill is going to be all right as a living place, I fancy. The last three weeks have almost been unbroken peace. I feel very indisposed to do anything more; and very tired.

Philpotts-Hardy, the rhododendron is is good flower at the moment, leading his hill side by a month or two towards the promise of colour. I hope you will be able to see him, some day. Except for Wednesday (when I have to go to Hythe, to my old boat-yard) I shall be here continuously now, I hope... though in disorder, as the place is unfinished, and I potter with job after job. But please come, if you are in Dorset soon.

Yours ever

T E Shaw

Source: DG 869-70
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 15 January 2005

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