2 Dec 1921

2 December 1921

Chalet des Sapins, Montana-sur-Sierre, Switzerland

   Tell me, Sidney, why are people clothed in this awful armour? Why is it shameful to feel warm hearted? Why must one go on and on pretending, "carrying it off". I remember my immense surprise when my first husband sent me letters with without prejudice at the top. But all the letters one gets are without prejudice. Its very odd. Dont other people want real friendship as I do? Are they all content with a kind of game?
But that is so boring, it is so barren, so cold. I suppose the truth is people prefer to be alone. There you are! They have not this cursed desire to share things, to understand and appreciate one another. Well, its very sad, Sidney, if that is so. In fact its insufferable. And the only way to bear it is by living in the past. But that is cold comfort. I want to live in the past, present and future all at one and the same time - dont you?
   You do feel that, in spite of everything, there is nothing wrong with Life? And this business of accepting, submitting, giving, taking, is deeply, deeply worth while. But wouldn't it be wonderful if that was taken for granted once and for all so that we went on from that point. Ah me!
Forgive me if I have bored you. Dont be bored, please.
   . . . I have just finished the proofs of my new book. Its been like getting back into the skin one had sloughed off. Not at all the skin I thought it, either. But it cant be helped. I think one must risk being seen not at one's best. Its no good hiding the unfavourable photographs, though pride wants to. All the same I must take a deeper breath next time.  [To Sydney Waterlow, 3 December 1921.]