Letter from Florence Henniker to Thomas Hardy, 26 May 1921

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2, Hyde Park Square,


My dear friend –

What a pity that your visit had to be postponed! The tea-party would have been delightfully interesting. But I hope that you & F. will, before long, manage a longer visit – 3 or 4 days at least? Then you might come to a quiet luncheon here with me –, & we might ^also^ have a peaceful drive some-where? Please think this [Page 2] over seriously? and F. tells me you must see yr. publisher & your occulist, so I feel I am justified in bothering you with my requests. –

Poor Sir James Barrie seems to have passed through one tragic experience after another – I wonder if he will go on ^still^ writing plays–.

I went to the lecture yesterday for which F. so kindly sent me the [Page 3] Ticket. My brother took me there & back, & we both enjoyed Mr De La Mare's excellent address. It was on Keats as a man, much more than as a poet – & this was no doubt a more original line to take –. I hope he will re-print it. After the lecture I had a little talk with D.La M – chiefly about you! No doubt you know that his admiration for you is of the most cordial kind. I told him that I was sure you would be pleased if he went to Max Gate to see you, & he would be delighted to do so – So I hope you will perhaps let [Page 4] him know ^some day^ that he may come? – He said he had just been reading "A Pair of Blue Eyes" – I also went to the P. View of the R.A. with the ticket you were good enough to send- It seemed to me to be an Ex. with plenty of good^fine^^fine^ work in it. – I went at a quiet hour, so was spared the sight of Mrs Asquith & other celebrities.

The Albert Hall meeting for the dear old Horses was a splendid & most enthusiastic gathering. 8000 people – & we had admirable

[Page 5] speeches from Sir G. Wild, Sir E Marshall Hall &c also little Miss Cole's straight-forward, heart rending story of the horrors that go on –. If this year sees the passing of a Plumage Bill & one to save the Horses, it [Page 6] won't be at all a bad one, in spite of strikes!

Ever yr affec.friend

Flo H

I see that at Weymouth it was 83° yesterday in the shade – apparently warmer

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than anywhere else.