Nov. 13, 1952

Dear George:

Your letter with its kind remarks made grand reading. It is always a pleasure to hear from you.

We have had a melancholy term at Vic. Joe's death was, as you can readily imagine, a terrible loss both as lecturer and personal friend. I can't yet get used to his not sauntering into my office every day or so for a chat. And Ruth Jenking is in hospital for a heavy operation. That means that the work of both of them has to be divided up between the rest of us.

Though Robins and I are now on the 'retired' list, we have been called back for special lecturing – special but the schedule is as heavy as ever.

I wish we had you here. In fact, a year ago, I mentioned you to Joe but he said he understood you were quite happy at Carleton. The College appointed this fall as lecturer a Vic grad and Harvard Ph.D. David Knight. In a year or two both Robins and I will be definitely emeriti and I don't know what the prospects will be. Norrie is now acting Chairman and a grand fellow he is.

We are out for 'a living endowment' of $50,000 – a big deficit in view of the decrease of enrolment. The last of the returned men graduated a year ago, so we have dropped from 2400 to 1100.

I am glad you liked 'The Spike.' I had to make it a bit rough in spots wherever the subject matter required granite. The book has received the best reviews yet forwarded to me. The first edition is about exhausted and a second is in sight.

I hear glowing accounts of your Ottawa lectures mainly from Ottawa students attending Queen's. I gave up Queen's last summer and A.J.M. Smith took charge. I hope to have more time during the summers for my own personal work. I trust also that you will find time for your poetry, but lecturing does make inroads into private interests.

So you are to have a 'fourth.' Give my best regards to Jeanne (if I may so call her). Let me know results later will you.

Ned Pratt


Chairman
Of the Department of English.