21 Cortleigh Blvd.
Toronto, Ont.
Jan 15/53

Dearest Cayke:

We were delighted that you got in on time without customs and immigration officialism. I stay in the house during the mornings to get the mail and take a good long look at your most artistic calligraphy. In fact, the contents inside, as much as we appreciate them, (and there is no doubt whatsoever of such appreciation) takes second place to the masterly way you end t's and p's and c's. Cortleigh should certainly be spelled Courtleigh to accord with the flourish which looks as if it came from Buckingham Palace.

Which brings me to a second point.

Cal has just written saying that he wants 1000 copies of Magic in Everything which appeared in Mayfair last month. He wants to send a copy to 1000 of his friends and clients everywhere. I think he puts too high a value on the poem but still many misguided Newfoundlanders have been talking to him and wanting to get the verbiage. Well, here's the point.

I should like to write it out in long hand as I did the other and shorter 'Mother and Child.' This would take four pages the size of this one, leaving a wide margin on the right hand side for illustrations.

Would you do the illustrations for me on Father Christmas etc. etc. etc.? As much as you like. Then I would get your printer to run off a thousand. Cal is very anxious to get something like this for his next Xmas present – strictly on a commercial basis in which you and I would be paid adequately. There would be plenty of time.

Only one thing has to be cleared up and that is copyright. Mayfair might agree to the thousand offprints with suitable acknowledgement. The poem took two pages of the magazine. The condition here of course would be that illustrations must go in the margin and such illustrations would have to be done extra. I should rather write out the poem in longhand and leave myself free for space. I haven't telephoned the Editor yet and there may be conditions attached. But I am writing you ahead to see if you would do your part. You would have as much latitude as you like in interpretation – the old boy with the whiskers, the reindeer, the open fire-place, the stockings, the bells, the youngsters, the madonna and so on, following the thread of the 100 lines. It would be signed by me and the illustrations by you. We could also use it as our own Xmas card. This is just a feeler – more to come later. Your 12th day is constantly getting appreciation – a wonderful work of illustrative art.

I am enclosing Bush's note to give you the address whenever you manage to get up his way.

Much love
Father (still sneezing)


immigration officialism
Claire had moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts and was searching for work.

Magic in Everything
A Christmas poem he had written for the magazine Mayfair (December 1952). The proposal outlined materialized in a four-page Christmas card (1 leaf folded, using recto and verso, front and back) bearing both an abridged version of the poem (reduced from 114 to 45 lines) in Pratt's hand, small and neat, and illustrations and decorations by Claire.

'Mother and Child'
A Christmas poem he had written for Viola's young peoples' paper, World Friends (Dec. 1936). The poem in Pratt's hand illustrated by Claire had been used on a Christmas card a year or so earlier.

Your 12th day
A Christmas card illustrating the Twelve Days of Christmas, which Claire had designed around 1950. It had been reproduced in the Globe and Mail along with designs by a number of other artists.