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Thursday, April 12, 1888.

Thursday, April 12, 1888.

W. sometimes has what he calls "house-cleaning days." [See indexical note p027.2] He puts aside some waste for me on these occasions. I always take along what he gives me. I know what will be its ultimate value as biographical material. He rarely or never takes that into account. For instance today he said: "I would burn such stuff up—or tear it up—anything to get it out of the road." He laughed in handing me three letters done up in a string. "They are all declinations of poems," he remarked: "from different men at different times.' [See indexical note p027.3] Then after a pause: "These editorial dictators have a right to dictate: they know what their magazines are made for. I notice that we all get cranky about them when they say 'No, thank you,' but after all somebody has got to decide: I am sure I never have felt sore about any negative experience I have had, and I have had plenty of it—yes, more that than the other—mostly that, in fact. [See indexical note p027.4] But take these letters—it is interesting to read the reasons they give for saying no. Bret Harte has become considerably more famous since those days: I used to think he was one of our men, or about to be—destined for the biggest real work: but somehow when he went to London the best American in him was left behind and lost."

Rooms of the Overland Monthly, San Francisco, Apr. 13th, 1870. My dear sir, [See indexical note p028.1]

I fear that the Passage to India is a poem too long and too abstract for the hasty and the material minded readers of the O.M.

With many thanks, I am,

Your obt svt F. Bret Harte, Ed. O.M.
Harper & Brothers' Editorial Rooms, Franklin Square, New York, June 8, 1885. My dear Whitman,

[See indexical note p028.2] The Voice of the Rain does not tempt me, and I return it herewith with thanks.

Yours ever, &c. H. M. Alden.
The Nineteenth Century, 1 Paternoster Square, London, E.C., May 19th, 1887. My dear Sir: [See indexical note p028.3]

I greatly regret being unable to avail myself of the Poems November Boughs which you so kindly sent me with your note dated May 2d. In order not to put you to inconvenience by delay, I return them at once enclosed herewith. With very many thanks for your kind thought of me I remain

Yours very truly James Knowles.
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