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Updated July 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Bruce Rogers

Clouds Hill,


Dear B. R.

Very welcome back! Back, you will notice, with a smile. You seem right, somehow, on this side.

I'm 'out' now, of the R.A.F. and sitting in my cottage rather puzzled to find out what has happened to me, is happening and will happen. At present the feeling is mere bewilderment. I imagine leaves must feel like this after they have fallen from their tree and until they die. Let's hope that will not be my continuing state.

Money is very short, and this is the only spot, apparently, where I can afford to live: but it is too soon to judge of that. In a few months' time I will know for sure if my savings are enough, or not. Meanwhile I am practising a not un-amusing penury - or parsimony, rather. Also I work enough at wood-cutting and gathering pipe-laying and building to tire me out thoroughly by each early afternoon... and then follows a heavenly laze, in the sun, if available, or by my fires if not.

But on the whole I think I prefer engrossment to comfort. Perhaps comfort is an acquired taste which grows with indulgence?

We must meet: and I cannot put you up. My activities have reduced the cottage to chaos and almost most forbid me to sleep in it! So tell me where and when you will be somewhere (London and Oxford are equi-distant from here) and I shall do my best to arrive.

Your Melville book might be of great value. Clarel was not wholly good. His notes for it (which these must be, I think, will afford a very valuable check on how he wrote. As for the Bible... if you find a spoiled sheet, may l have it? Those I had at Plymouth got too soiled to be fair. Dirty places, R.A.F. workshops.


T.E S.

Source: BR2
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 7 February 2006

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