RLS was suffering at this time from a temporary weakness of the eyesight.
[As usual, for correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4, 1244.]
To Will H. Low [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 209-210]
La Solitude, Hyères [? Late March 1884]
My dear Low,
The blind man in these sprawled lines sends greeting. I have been ill, as perhaps the papers told you. The news – ‘great news – glorious news – sec-ond ed-ition!’ – went the round in England.
Anyway, I now thank you for your pictures, which, particularly the Arcadian one, we all (Bob included, he was here sick-nursing me) much liked.
Herewith are a set of verses which I thought pretty enough to send to press.
Then I thought of the Manhattan, towards whom I have guilty and compunctious feelings. Last, I had the best thought of all to send them to you in case you might think them suitable for illustration. It seemed to me quite in your vein. If so, good; if not, hand them on to Manhattan, Century, or Lippincott, at your pleasure, as all three desire my work or pretend to.
But I trust the lines will not go unattended. Some riverside will haunt you;
and O! be tender to my bathing girls.
The lines are copied in my wife’s hand, as I cannot see to write otherwise than with the pen of Cormoran,
Love to your wife. Yours ever,
Copied it myself.