Skip to main content

Full text of "Laughing Torso"

See other formats

and held the arms and legs close to our bodies, so
that they stuck out of the draperies. It had a
curious effect and looked very sur-realiste.
The gipsy I knew when I came to Paris was called
Fenella. She had been discovered, sitting on a
doorstep in London, by Ransome. She had posed
for Augustus John and I had seen several drawings
of her at his exhibition at the Carfax Galleries.
She looked like a bird. She had a very long neck
and large rather protruding eyes. She wore a tight
dress with silver buttons down the front and shoes
like I did, with straps. She had the prettiest legs
and smallest feet that I have ever seen. She played
a guitar and sang. She spoke about ten languages
and sang in sixteen, including Japanese. She was
supposed to be consumptive and drank soda-water
and milk. She had a drawer-full of louis d'or, one
of which she lent me one day and which I gave back.
She came to my party and sang. We bought bottles
of wine at fifty centimes a bottle and it was quite
drinkable. At five a.m. we went to the Rotonde
and sat there till nine o'clock.
Frederick Etchells, the painter, was living in
Paris. He was a friend of Wyndham Lewis's.
There was a very amusing and clever painter
called Charles Winzer and every evening we three
would meet at the Rotonde. We wrote poems, I
wrote the last words of the poems, four of which had
to rhyme and a fifth that did not, and they wrote
in the poems. They were very funny and we spent
the whole evening laughing at them. My friend
Basil, whom I quarrelled with periodically, was cut