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#2466: Willa Cather to Meta Schaper Cather, January 16, 1947

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⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ My dear Meta1:

This year I was literally buried under Christmas cards – I suppose as a result of Professor Brown's4 kind article5 in The Yale Review6 – but I can truthfully say that of all these cards of greeting, yours was the one that I kept in sight on my dresser. Not for the quotation from a would–be poet, but because the card itself is so simple and cheerful and I know it is just the kind of Christmas greeting that Roscoe7 would have loved. I had welcome Christmas greetings from both Elizabeth8 and Margaret9.

Well, dear Meta, no matter what happens in the future, I will have the memory of those two summers10 when Elizabeth and Margaret visited me at Grand Manan11. Everything was lovely then; they enjoyed and appreciated the spots which I most loved on that remote little island which I fear I shall never see again.12 Often in the wakeful hours of the night I think of Margaret and Elizabeth just as they were then, when we used to have gay little dinners, with champagne, down in our funny little cottage on Sunday nights. Youngsters grow up and become totally absorbed in lives of their own, and the amusements of their childhood mean very little to them. But to older people those memories remain important. In showing Margaret and Elizabeth my favorate spots on that lovely island, I re-lived all the excitement of my early explorations on Grand ⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩Manan. My nieces have outlived those things, but I will never outlive them, because at my time of life one lives backward rather than forward – in personal relations and affections that is especially true.

Lovingly yours, Willie

P.S. This is a secret, but I am hoping to get to the West Coast13 this next summer14 and meet you in secret somewhere, for a visit.

Mrs. R. C. Cather1 Villa Riviera Hotel Long Beach3 California NEW YORK, N.Y.2 JAN 15 1947 6—PM