4 May 1922

Victoria Palace Hotel, Paris

My dear Lamb
   If I sound cold and horrid - unloving - sometimes, forgive me. I try to help it but I don't succeed very well. What I ought to say is "I am writing about Bolshevism and so on for two reasons. (1) Because it is interesting in a superficial way but (2) because I want to tide over a difficult moment." (2) is the most important thing. Its rather like the nonsense people talk in doctors' waiting rooms. You know? Not being able to keep quiet or to show what I feel I hand you the copy of Punch or whatever it is . . . Forgive me, my little Brettushka. And do understand once and for always its not for lack of love.
[...]Its rather an important day for me. I am beginning my long serial half of which has to be finished in a month from now! And I have also signed away all the rest of my book to be ready sans faute by the end of the summer. The serial is very exciting. Its 24.000 words, a short novel in fact. I want it to end with a simply scrumptious wedding - rose pink tulle frocks for the bridesmaids, favours on the horses heads, that marvellous moment at the church when everyone is waiting - the servants in a pew to themselves. The cook's hat. But all all divinely beautiful if I can do it - gay, but with that feeling that "beauty vanishes beauty passes. Though rare, rare it be . . . "
[To Dorothy Brett, 3 May 1922.]