Letter to an unknown recipient


   My dear friend,

   I just wanted to let you know in a short note that I am very ill, but that I read that one of your pieces has been performed and I am very pleased about that. I am no longer at Versailles and I don't tell you my new refuge because I can't see anybody, whoever they may be, and in the last five days I haven't even uttered a single word to my valet. But if I am better soon I will let you know. Imagine that certain of my shares were rising (because I knew I hadn't the right to sell any of them) and I had them replaced by El Banco Espagnol del Rio de la Plata stocks and Santa Fe bonds purely for the amusement of telling you and hearing you reply: "That's hilarious!" it was an innocent pleasure I was anticipating and it has been denied me. I have even thought of taking out stocks in Rio Janeiro Light and Power or the United Railways of Havana. This is all just a bit of pedantry and exhibitionism to show that now I know as much about South America as you do. I wired Madame Mortet as I was leaving Cabourg, she never replied or showed any sign of life. As for me I can only show her signs of death...

   Marcel Proust.

   When you send me your news, write to 102 Bd Haussmann, to be forwarded.

Recipient could possibly be Raphaël-Georges Lévy c.1906.


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