13 January 1922

Chalet des Sapins, Montana-sur-Sierre, Switzerland

   About Joyce, and my endeavours to be doubly fair to him because I have been perhaps unfair and captious - oh, I cant get over a great great deal. I cant get over the feeling of wet linoleum and unemptied pails and far worse horrors in the house of his mind. Hes so terribly unfein; thats what it amounts to. There is a tremendously strong impulse in me to beg him not to shock me! Well, its not very rare. Ive had it before with men and women many times in my life. One can stand much but that kind of shock which is the result of vulgarity & commonness, one is frightened of receiving. Its as though ones mind goes on quivering afterwards...Its just exactly the reverse of the exquisite rapture one feels in for instance that passage which ends a chapter where Proust describes the flowering apple trees in the spring rain.
   But at the memory of that I suddenly long to take your hand and say: "How marvellous life can be. How marvellous!" Ah, Sydney, how can I be thankful enough that Violet and you are on the earth at this time. That we have met & shall meet again. Do you remember one afternoon as we were in the car together you said you would like to go to Sweden? Why on earth should that have been so tremendously important - so infinitely delightful. It often comes back to me and always with the same ‘atmosphere' of happiness and understanding between us. But one could go on with such memories - - -  [To Sydney Schiff, 12 January 1922.]