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#0085: Willa Cather to Dorothy Canfield, [May 15 to May 20, 1903]

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My Dearest Dorothy1;

You are a wonder-worker! Your letter3 to mother4 brought me the first one that I have had from her for two years that I could even think of reading through. It was almost without anger or resentment. I begin to think that a peaceable adjustment of things may still be possible. Thank you again and again for doing it—and for thinking of it, too.

I'm exultant about your father5 getting the books6 to such good people. Miss Gilder7 wrote me a very nice note—will have the book reviewed in the July Critic8.

Isabelle9 and Edith10 have gone off on a fishing trip up in West Virginia11, and I am left as sole mediator between the heads of the family12. So far, all has gone beautifully, but the cook left this morning and that will make complications.

I had a wild letter from Sarah Harris13 the other day remonstrating about the "animalism" in my book of verse and telling me about the bad impression it gave people of me. The woman surely is crazy. It's mortuary if anything, that book.

I've had a succession of mad gayties and lots of hard work ever since I got home, and I am getting pretty well tired out. The heat these last few days has been terrible. I wish I knew about New York14 this summer!

What's become of Miss Lathrop15? I have'nt heard a word from her since I got back. Is your mother16 painting these days, and what? and have you done anything with that dago-Vermont story17? It seems to me I did not talk about anything but myself while I was in New York. I took a terrible lot of interest in myself all at once.

Have you read "The Better Sort"18 yet? Oh its a delight! Some of the stories are up to his19 very top best and are made up of the most obscure and complicated trivialities you evr ever measured your wits against.

My love to your mother, and dont forget to give it her.

Yours always Willie.


I have'nt heard from Mr. Partington20, so I fear there is not much hope in that direction. I'm almost afraid that plan is too good to hope for anyway, the whole idea of being there, I mean, and so near everything good.