A Calendar of the Letters of Willa Cather

19 letters found

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Results 11-19:

To Pendleton Hogan [in Washington, D.C.]Feb. 5, 1940, from New YorkUVa  , also copy at WCPM

His letter came while she was in the West on vacation [?]. Glad he likes My Mortal Enemy. Reason Ewan Grey and Esther do not reenter the story is that people dropped out of Myra's life. She had too many friends; that was one of her problems. Couldn't possibly keep up with them all. It was her excessive devotion to people that made her think of Oswald as her enemy at the end, as if he had destroyed her inner peace. But she could never have had inner peace. Knew the original of Myra quite well. She died fifteen years before the book was written. Will stop with that one question.   Willa Cather   [Stout #1469]

To Mrs. Sidney FloranceFeb. 23, [1942]Newberry 

Enclosing two form letters regarding the Myra Hess Fund, to which she is a regular contributor.   Willa   [Stout #1574]

To Elsie Cather [September 1922] UNL-Rosowski Cather 

Claude [One of Ours] seems to have caused a commotion. People are reading the novel incorrectly as a position statement as if in a debate. Friends including Mencken and Fanny Butcher do not like it. They expected another My Antonia. Can't be expected to do the same things again and again, but hates to lose friends. They claim the book lacks the deep human touch of the earlier books and think she tried to write a spectacular war novel. Many like the book a lot, but they are not the people she hoped to satisfy. In life and in art there are always tradeoffs. Has lost friends but advanced technically as a writer. Please read enclosed reviews to Dr. Tyndale, even though his mind is feeble with age and drugs. If she reads them aloud, he'll understand a little, and he deserves whatever pleasures he can get. She herself is the only thing in his life that has succeeded. Confidentially: Knopf has sold 15,000 copies with 18,000 in reserve—a gamble that will pinch him if there are no re-orders. He invested heavily in the book but says if he goes under on it so be it. Gets thirty-seven cents herself for each copy sold. Sinclair [Lewis] review in tonight's New York Evening Post calls it a failure and asks why a woman should write about war. Why indeed? But the topic chose her, she had to do it. Skip the Lewis review with Dr. Tyndale, but do read Zoë's and both of Burton Rascoe's. Will send Heywood Broun's review later. Is in bed and not feeling very literary. Just returned yesterday, hasn't even unpacked. Has seen only Knopf, but has received a lot of correspondence offering both congratulations and condolences!   Willie 

To Elsie CatherSeptember 21, 1940UNL-Rosowski Cather 

Knows a lot about the young Queen [Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother] discussed in enclosed article. The queen is friends with Myra Hess and Anita Gunn. The Queen's father is a poor Scottish landowner, and another daughter of a poor Scottish landowner, Lady Dolly Mackenzie, married into the Hambourg family and is very economical. Anita Gunn was raised on a farm that adjoined the Queen's before there was any thought that she would be Queen. The royal family summered in the Scottish Highlands and George [George VI, Albert Frederick Arthur George Windsor] liked to play tennis with Elizabeth. As Duke of York he had no hope of ascending the throne, so could marry a poor girl. Queen Mary [Victoria Mary Augusta Louise Olga Pauline Claudine Agnes, Princess of Teck], being Scottish, did not object. Elizabeth a natural queen. She did lovely things in Canada; ordinary people are full of stories about her visit. Had heard a great deal about her from Myra and Anita Gunn, so was not taken by surprise. 

To Mary Virginia Cather,  Tuesday [November 25, 1924?] UNL-Southwick 

Sends Thanksgiving greetings. Mary Virginia is spending Thanksgiving with a friend in town and has been invited to come on Friday for belated turkey dinner and stay over. Thursday is occupied with engagements: dinner with the Knopfs and a box at the Boston Symphony with a party afterwards. Is not looking forward to it, as she prefers to hear music alone. However, cannot let people think her reclusive. Does little Helen Louise need a new coat? Doesn't want to be too indulgent, but would like to send another. Please find out her Christmas wishes. Dr. Tyndale says that Louise Westermann is very ill. Happy Thanksgiving.   Willie 

To Mary Virginia Cather [January 25, 1929?] , from the Grosvenor Hotel, New York CityUNL-Southwick 

Is not typing the letter because Edith is sleeping. Has a bad, atypical cold—no cough but a very hoarse voice. Didn't mother used to get such an ailment? Had tea with Myra Hess recently, but could not talk, so she played the piano. Donovan [Albert Donovan?] came over—saw him last at Christmas. Jessie's Christmas letter preached about diet and reported that she convinced a doctor to feed mother barley water exclusively. Did not bother to respond. Will stay in a hotel when she comes to see mother so as not to burden her and Elsie. Sleep well.   Willa 

To Trixie Mizer FloranceDecember 22, [1946?]Drew U (Caspersen 54) 

Has not seen Myra, who has been ill and traveling often. Trixie's illness adds her to a list of friends poisoned by penicillin. Would only accept the medication from an experienced physician, like those at Johns Hopkins or the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. Is not working much, though had productive time at Northeast Harbor, Maine, during the summer. Is focusing on fixing up her apartment since she delayed repairs during the war. Chairs were falling apart, but the upholsterer repaired them wonderfully. Has never been a careless bohemian artist! Marutha Menuhin sent thirty pounds of kitchen gear from San Francisco since it is more available on the west coast. Merry Christmas.   Willa 

To Trixie Mizer FloranceAugust 12, 1945Drew U (Caspersen 54) 

Has requested that Myra Hess send Trixie a photograph.   Willa 

To Mrs. Frank Grippen of Spokane, WashingtonJanuary 14, 1931, from the Grosvenor, New YorkDrew U (Caspersen 53) 

Sorry for slow response. Oswald was Myra Henshaw's "mortal enemy" [in My Mortal Enemy]. She saw such powerful love as spoiling one's internal peace, and that simply is what the novel is about.   Willa Cather 

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