Letter from Peter McArthur to R. H. Hathaway, March 14, 1920.

Author: McArthur, Peter, 1866-1924.

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Letter from Peter McArthur to R.H. Hathaway, March 14, 1920

Author: Peter McArthur

6 pp.

Source copy consulted: Harriet Irving Library, Archives and Special Collections.

The Rufus Hathaway Collection of Canadian literature

Recipient: R. H. Hathaway

Prepared for the Electronic Text Centre at the University of New Brunswick Libraries.

All unambiguous end-of-line hyphens have been retained.

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Library of Congress Subject Headings

English nonfiction; prose masculine Special Collections McArthur, Peter, 1866-1924 -- Correspondence Hathaway, R. H. (Rufus Hawtin), 1869-1933 -- Correspondence LCSH

Letter from Peter McArthur to R. H. Hathaway, March 14, 1920

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Appin, ,
March 14th, '20.
Dear Hathaway:

I shall arrange to be at

Convocation Hall on the evening of
March 31st.

I wish you would let me know how
much time I can have and whether I shall
be on the program before or after
I did not realize how much
Carman is
part of my life until I talked in
Chatham at
the benefit
Stringer arranged. I was
intimately associated with
Carman for ten
years and have known him for thirty. I
have scores of letters from him — read
many of his poems in the original m.s.
and probably bought more of his work
than anyone else. Many of his earlier poems
recall interesting reminiscences and I find
that I can still spout them with the old
Carman once said that he

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was writing to leave his future fame to what —

Harved Hall and I could quote from
memory of his poems. In
Chatham I
reminisced and spouted poems without
any plan but for a dignity stunt at

Convocation Hall I would make a
judicious selection, arrange the matter
and confine myself to a set time. Also
if I am to appear before
Sassoon I would
make a different selection than if I am to
appear after him. This is based on my
experience on the platform. So you see
I need the information I have asked
for if I am to do my part properly.

I also want you to reserve those
tickets for me and I will pay for them
when I go to
Toronto. I want you to
send one of the tickets, with my compliments,
to Mr. Norman Plass, Manager the Dominion,
Chatauquas, Lunisden Building, Toronto.
Hold,the other two until I see you or
until I instruct you where to send

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3 them.

I am sorry that
Stringer is not
to be there but I shall do my best to deal
Carman so as to make the people
acquainted with him. I have not had
any recent information about his health
or his movements. Though the last letter
I got from
Kennerley some weeks ago said
that he was improving.

Are you going to accept contributions
Carman that night — besides the
price of admission? I think you would
get much more if you did so — if you
had a subscription list at the door
where people are going out. If you do I
think I can spout "The Pagan's Prayer" —
without making any further appeal — in
a way that will make people come
across with cash. I regard this poem
as one of
Carman's most beautiful and
there is a moving pattern in it that

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4 makes a powerful appeal to every lover
of poetry. It pictures as nothing else
possibly could the pathos of
struggle with life and his devotion to
the beauty of nature.

Are you familiar with
sketch of himself in his privately printed
"Ballad of St. Kavin" As this poem is not
in any of his collected works that I
have seen it has an added interest. It
is the best sketch of him ever written even
though he ends with the stanza,

“If a friend should tell you, friend
That this is Kavin's portraiture
By his own hand and command
The truth of it — be not too sure"”

I think it would be well to give it as part
of that night's contribution.

Well, here's luck to the enterprise. I
hope we can show him that he is not
“friendless in the gathering gloom.”

Yours faithfully
Peter McArthur
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P.S. Who is to be the chairman on the
great occasion?

I think
Premier Drury would be glad
to help along if his attention were called
to the matter. He is a great lover of