53. 6 July 1993 [NM] (Bacon's homosexuality; Vickers on)

previously unpublished; © the estate of eric sams and beatrice cazac (Mrs. Mathew’s letters)

Dear Eric,

   Further to my letter of 2 July, in view of your inquiry in PS to last letter (19 vi) returning my ch. 51 with welcome comments: I can't resist sending you my chapter on Bacon homosexual –  for your amusement, not work! BV rejects it – mistakenly (at least as to his 2nd point) – as follows:


'The discussion of Bacon's alleged pederasty corrects some gross errors, but is not otherwise strongly argued or really central to the main issue, his actions as a politician and lawyer. I would omit it.'


   It’s the main issue for BV, not for me. For some, eg. Daphne du Maurier (to whom I wrote asking for a source for her interchanges between B. and Lady Hatton – there was none) his homosexuality is the only issue. 'His reputation?' she wrote back, 'I suppose you mean whether he was a homosexual or not?'

   For me the chapter is relevant, and I'm planning to include it, tho' God knows how I'll manage to boil down to the maximum limit I've now decided on – 190,000 words. The present first half – 135,000 words, BV approves of, wants no cut in, wants even additions. This means lopping off some 55,000 words from the second part. So nearly all the section on Bacon poet, including ch. 51, on which you comment favourably, must go. However, I might include some in my next book – if God gives me Herman Melville's wish: 'Oh Life, Time, Cash and Patience!'

   Please don't bother with this chapter, don't even return it, I can easily print out another. Unless of course you have some astringent remarks or cuts to suggest. What you say about ch. 51 is very helpful, and I agree about Blake. (I've probably a good deal less Latin than Shakespeare had.)

   Please draw to yourself – and pick – the roses.