Then, it is agreed, since we can not suppress Latour Saint-Ybars; you shall go after him and Aisse next, if I think it suitable.
We shall meet Saturday at poor Sainte-Beuve’s funeral. How the little band diminishes! How the few survivors of the Medusa’s raft are disappearing!
A thousand affectionate greetings.
Impossible, dear old beloved. Brebant is too far, I have so little time. And then I have made an engagement with Marchal and Berton at Magny’s to say farewell. If you can come, I shall be very happy and on the other hand if it is going to make you ill, don’t come, I know very well that you love me and shall not be angry with you about anything.
What has become of you, my dear old beloved troubadour? are you correcting proof like a galley slave, up to the last minute? For the last two days they have been announcing your book for tomorrow. I am looking for it with impatience, for you are not going to forget me, are you? You will be praised and condemned; you expect that. You are too truly superior not to arouse envy and you don’t care, do you? Nor I either for you. You have the strength to be stimulated by what discourages others. There will certainly be a rumpus; your subject will be quite opportune in this time of revolutionists. The good progressives, the true democrats will approve of you. The idiots will be furious, and you will say: “Come weal, come woe!” I am also correcting proof of Pierre qui roule and I have half finished a new novel which will not make much of a stir; that is all that I ask for at the moment. I work alternately on my novel, the one that I like, and on the one that the Revue does not dislike as much, but which I like very little. It is arranged that way; I don’t know if I am making a mistake. Perhaps those which I like are the worst. But I have stopped worrying about myself, so far as I have ever done so. Life has always taken me out of myself, and so it will to the end. My heart is always affected to the detriment of my head. At present it is my little children who devour all my intellect; Aurore is a jewel, a nature before which I bow in admiration; will it last like that?
You are going to spend the winter in Paris, and I, I don’t know when I shall go. The success of le Batard continues; but I am not impatient, you have promised to come as soon as you are free, at Christmas at the very latest, to keep revel with us. I think only of that, and if you break your word we shall be in despair here. With this I embrace you with a full heart as I love you.