4 June

4 June 1920

2 Portland Villas, Hampstead - London

My temper is bad; my personal habits are not above reproach. I am ungracious, mentally untidy I let things pass that I don't understand (unpardonable) and I excuse myself - invent pretexts for not working. Yet is my desire to be idle greater than my desire to work. Is my love of reverie greater than my love of action. Treacherous habit! Habit above all others evil & of long standing. I must give it up at once or lose my self-respect... It is only by making myself worthy of Jack that I shall be worthy of what I mean our relationship to be. He that faileth in little things shall not succeed in great things. Even my handwriting. From this moment it too must change. After supper I must start my journal & keep it day by day - a record of my progress towards spiritual health... But can I be honest? If I lie it's no use.

... Once they're found out - once the taint's discovered, you might as well try and get rid of a touch of the tar brush.... "No," he thought, staring at a drowned leaf that bobbed against the edge of the cup, "it's no good. It won't work. Charlie must go."
...And now, thinking over Charlie's cleanliness and cheerfulness and good temper, it seemed to him that it had all been acting. An astonishing example in so young a boy of criminal cleverness. What else could it have been? Look how, even after he had been forgiven and the whole thing wiped out, after he'd been allowed to get off ‘Scott free' [KM Notebooks, undated]