Skip to main content

Full text of "Laughing Torso"

See other formats


enough to invite me to her house and to look after
me. I stayed in bed and had a room overlooking
the garden. Several times a week D, H. Lawrence,
his wife, and Katharine Mansfield came to see Anna.
Mrs. Lawrence and Katharine sat by my bedside
and talked to me. D. H. Lawrence sang hymns for
hours in the drawing-room. This was not awfully
cheerful. I had never seen him and was told not to
get out of bed on any account as my temperature
was nearly a hundred and four. One day I heard
voices in the garden. I heard Anna and a man's
voice and got out of bed and saw a man with
reddish hair walking amongst the apple trees,
talking to Anna. That was the only time I ever saw
Lawrence and never met him at all.
The Cafe Royal and other places closed early
during the War and we found an Armenian cafe at
the back of Shaftesbury Avenue. There everyone
went. Epstein, Michael Arlen, John Cournos, in
fact every inhabitant of the cafe. We drank
Turkish coffee and ate Turkish delight and I think
that the conversation, as the result of the Turkish
coffee, was better than that of the crime de menthe
frappee. There was an old man who spoke on soap
boxes in Hyde Park who went there one day; he
decided to take to painting. He used to buy old
oil paintings from the Caledonian market and other
places and touch them up and exhibit them in the
Armenian cafe. He had a one-man show there.
He also painted spirits. One day I saw him in
Charlotte Street. He had a costermonger's barrow
with him and it was loaded with the tops of old