Aerogram Signed Edward Mendelson to Stella Musulin 1981-11-21
Mendelson, Edward
  • Mayer, Sandra
  • Frühwirth, Timo
Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities and Cultural Heritage, Vienna 2021
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Cite this Source (MLA 9th Edition)
Andorfer Peter, Elsner Daniel, Frühwirth Timo, Grigoriou Dimitra, Mayer Sandra, Mendelson Edward and Neundlinger Helmut. Auden Musulin Papers: A Digital Edition of W. H. Auden's Letters to Stella Musulin. Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities and Cultural Heritage, Austrian Academy of Sciences, 2022, .
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0001                                              39 Claremont Ave, apt 31
0002                                              New York NY 10027


0004                                              21 November 1981

0005 Dear Stella,

0006 Delighted you got that EARLY AUDEN, and even more delighted you find
0007 it worth looking into.  Is it a universal experience among authors to
0008 be surprised that someone actually reads one's book? I'm so familiar
0009 with the thing by now, and so aware of its deficiencies, that I wish
0010 I could recall the edition and rewrite the whole book from the start.
0011 Luckily, teaching, reviewing and miscellaneous annoyances keep the
0012 mind elsewhere.  One of those miscellaneous annoyances was a move
0013 from my old flat to another one on the same floor in the same building.
0014 The new address is up above, and the only change is in the apartment
0015 number.  Phone number still 212 222-0679.

0016 Yes, I saw the young man who was doing advance work for Robert Robinson,
0017 but haven't heard from him since July.  I gather that work progresses,
0018 though.  There was an hour on Wystan on BBC Radio the other week--a
0019 "dramatization" with an actor reading the poems and lots of ominous
0020  noises off.  I'm told it was fairly dreadful, but perhaps the TV film
0021 will be better.  I saw quite a good one from the BBC on Benjamin Britten.
0022 Its only fault--and I'm not sure this was a fault, given the usual tone
0023 of TV journalism--was an awed tone of worship.

0024 Easy answers to important questions.  Those two volumes by and about
0025 Auden
sound very attractive.  (Which publisher is interested?)  The
0026 place to write for permissions is to the agents, specifically, to

0027                         Maureen Walters
0028                         Curtis Brown Ltd
0029                         575 Madison Avenue
0030                         New York NY 10022
0031                         USA

0032 Mention my name, and things will be easier.  But they should be easy
0033 anyway.

0034 Now let me beg you for an easy answer.  I've heard from at least two
0035 different people that they had seen (or knew someone else who had seen)
0036 a German text of your Wystan memoir in print.  Are they right, or are
0037 they confusing this with an occasion when you read it aloud (and it was
0038 reported)?  I had an Austrian student here this summer working on Wystan,
0039 and I wanted to tell her about the piece, but didn't know where to find
0040 it.  Please, please tell me if you printed it, and if so, where.  No need
0041 for a long letter: just a "No, calm down, I never printed it" or a "Yes,
0042 it appeared in such-in-such a journal" would be more than enough.  This is
0043 the one minor mystery of writings-about-Wystan I haven't been able to solve,
0044 so please do help.

0045 Have I told you any of my news?  I'm now at Columbia University permanently,
0046 if I want to be.  I have a flat with a small guest room and bath--so please
0047 take note if you're in this country for any reason.  I have a lady friend,
0048 the first whom I expect to be with for a very long time, and we are quite
0049 happy about things in general.  Next June we'll be in Europe, certainly in
0050 Paris, possibly father south, although we may put off the southern trip
0051 for another year or so.  I haven't been across the Atlantic this year; too

0053 Mendelson
0054 39 Claremont Ave, apt 31
0055 New York NY 10027

0056 Redaktion 11-12.
0057 Kronenzeitung.½ 2-5
0058 Morgen 1977. ·
0059 1.Numer. Heft.

0060                                     Frau Baronin
0061                                     Stella Musulin

0062                                     Schlösselgasse 8/17
0063                                     A-1080 Vienna
0064                                     Austria

0065 preoccupied, too broke, too much to do in New York to feel much of an
0066 impulse to get away.  My years in New Haven always left me panting to
0067 get overseas, but now I feel at home again.

0068 Did you see Humphrey Carpenter's book on Wystan? Not bad, as biographies
0069 go, but not very deep either.  It seems to have most of the facts right,
0070 which is something.  Now a life of Chester is being written, by the woman
0071 who recently married Chester's father, and who knew Chester since 1942.
0072 Full of surprises and purple passages; Chester would be pleased, I think,
0073 although I don't like to imagine how Wystan would have taken it.

0074 Affectionately,

0075 Ed