Last night I received a card from you bearing a small caricature on it. You succeeded to make me smile once more, as you had eupeated, but I am going to tell you that I was more interested with the readleations which the picture caused to me than with the bitterness of it. Do you know the person at relation between Fumiko and Hakutei ? Provably not. More than six years ago the former was living at Yanaka and Fumiko was introduced to me, and since then I ealled on them several times.
One day, when Shiisan was not at home, I was alone with Fumiko a little while in their
study. At that time she was a lovely girl of bushful eighteen and we both were talking about something or other in such a manner as young folks will do when left alone by themselves. Endless was our conversation and suddenly she opened her study window angrily and pointed to a small house standing next to her’s. “There lives a very unkind man there, sir,” she whispered. “Who lives here ?” “You know a young painter Hakutei don’t you, sir ?” she replied, “He lives there and calls us, Shiisan and myself, two devils, whenever he may see our faces.
Sometimes he comes out with his sketch book in hand, but as soon as he notice that our
study windows are opened, he hastens away into his house crying ‘Devils are peeping !'” Fumiko told me more of him, and I listened to idle speech smiling meaninglessly as you may suppose. Dear Toshimitsu ! Seven years have passed away like a dream, and the attitude with which Hakutei treat her in all the same. And as ourselves, I am alot to call her a devil rather than an angel and it will be most provably the case with her toward her old love.
The idea of all his made me smile last night at the first glance of the caricature. I have to tell you that a letter from my cousin came to me also. It was an invitation to go over to Tokyo and stay at her home during this vacation. It is a long time since I saw her last and she tells me in the letter that she also want to see me and to talk of things gone by. But I will not do so. Yesterday it was Christmas and you complaint of the season was bitter enough to make me smile, as bitter as wormwood in the Revelation. Now it is your turn to read this sweet letter, as sweet as honey, and smile with Mr.Kakuda over your editorial tables.
Snow is falling without ceasing these three days, and it is two feet and a half deep on the ground. Please remember me & Mr.Kakuda. I remain yours very affectionately.
P.S. I will write an essay on the “Heimatkunst” of Echigo this afternoon. I am always stundy Norseman. Many thanks for your kind introduction of Mr.Tokutomi’s latest work. I will soon have and read it.