Bliss Carman's Letters to Margaret Lawrence 1927-1929

Edited by D.M.R. Bentley

Assisted by Margaret Maciejewski

Letter 43

New Canaan, Connecticut

15. Dec. 1927



Dearest Margaret-Shiela.1


Very tardy in writing because of an imperative. See Toronto papers on Christmas eve.2

Also I have been in N.Y. twice this week and must go again to-morrow for Xmas shopping! Many thanks for your entrancing (and loving!) letters. It so piques my curious mind to know all you have to tell of aforetime—of which I know nothing knowingly. As to native-ness, certainly the spring corn dance at San Felipe last May3 was disturbing to the roots of this being. I never felt anything like it. Well, blessed soul, you know I will stand by my loyalties as well as I can, for I do recognize that as imperative.

Bless your heart for the fairy godmother wish for a million— some of it for me. Never mind. My moccasins are not in holes yet; my mackinaw is stout and warm: my legs still waggle and bear me up; and I have grape fruit, cold bath, heavenly black coffee every morning; and incomparable companionship—though few. What more, would one? More poetry? Yes. And reading takes it out of one, but also reading brings back as much at least as it gives—plus bread and butter. So I am all in all plus-er than minus. No? The readings may be ordained, who knows?


Do use all of me you will, words, wit, or witless good will. Also LOVE!!!

But don’t call me master. I’m not any body’s that! It terrifies me.

Your Carman

  1. See Letter 38 n.2. [back]

  2. The December 24, 1927 issues of the major Toronto newspapers contain nothing by Carman, but see Letter 45 n. 1. [back]

  3. Apparently Carman had attended a ceremonial corn-planting dance in San Felipe, New Mexico while on a reading tour of Calfornia and Arizona from mid-March to mid-May, 1927. He must have witnessed the dance in early May since he was back in New Canaan, Connecticut by May 15 (see Letter 1). See Leslie A. White, "The Pueblo of San Felipe," Memoirs of the American Anthropological Association, 38 (1932), 51. [back]