06 November

6 November 1920

Villa Isola Bella Menton, France

My precious darling
Your Friday letter has come & the new Tchekhov. Ill do the column as quickly as I can. You wonder I am sure that I dont send more work; that I take so long. Its not my fault. As a matter of fact I ought not to do even what I do just now. Ive had the subject out several times with Bouchage. For some reason Im in such a queer state mentally - work excites me MADLY, and fatigues me, too. I can't take it calmly. It sounds perfectly absurd but its an immense effort to begin and when I do begin I begin to get into a fever. And I am suffering with pains in my head-box. Awful ones. Of course with our imagination I think it can only mean my brain's going up like a rocket one day soon or Ive got something pressing on it or a vine curling round it or a fox eating it. You know our pleasant fancies. But in fair moments I think its only the result of my long illness and coughing and nerves. But they were so severe (are) this evening that I thought Id write and tell you about them. Not to apologise or to frighten you but just to let you know because I think you ought to. Another reason may be that in my cough mixture that Ive been taking for 2 years there has been a certain amount of opium. Im trying to knock it off now but it has had a certain effect and I think accounts for my sensitiveness now - nervous sensitiveness. I simply have to tell you this tonight. Not because anything might happen. But I know you are my own and will understand why I tell you. Im a bit frightened (as we are) about these head pains and sensations of violent raging excitement. [Letter to J. M. Murry in Collected Letters]