Tuesday, November 24, 2009

1930, April 17: HMK to RH- Illness

Thursday, April 17, 1930

My dear Miss Harrell;

This is just a line to thank you for your lovely letter which deserves the long answer it will receive a little later. I have had with my other burdens the most ungodly attack of grippe which has left me a little like a young calf as far as legs are concerned but I am being carted off to Cape Cod this afternoon for a week and the sea will set me up again. It helped to know that where you were there were cherry trees and dogwood and daffodils. I went to the flower show here just before I was imprisoned and I thought that all godless folk should be forced to go and see it too. There were millions of roses and no one but an utter fool could see so much beauty and not know that it was planned by and came from some source call it God or Buddha or Tao as you will that must have all the other attributes of beauty too – love and justice and mercy and immortality as well.

Your letter as published in the April Review was another thing that made life quite another thing than a succession of ice packs and a fight for breath and I am grateful to them for having published it and far more so to you for having written it. It was a tremendous compliment and a great encouragement. When I am well enough I hope you will let me send you a token of my appreciation. It will be something Chinese that I hope will always recall to you The Smile of Buddha.

Yours very sincerely,
HMK Smith

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