[ 1920 January, 24 ]Letters
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[Helouan] 6/2/20

My dear Costi
     My telegram of this afternoon will, I am sorry to think, have horribly upset you. The news of poor Paul’s death has been a severe shock for me and I am feeling it very acutely. The more so because I fear that I have not done for him all that I might to help him in his days of penury and suffering. I send you the telegram itself of the British consul at Hyères which did not come into my possession until about two o’clock this afternoon. It appears that the telegraph people searched the whole Cairo to find somebody in Cairo bearing the name Cavafy and it was only at the last moment that they applied to Moss Alexandria and found out that I was at Helouan. The urgent thing that appears to me to be incumbent on you and me to do is to make the best decent arrangements we can in respect of burial ground and tombstone: and I beg you to call on Alban who is now consul general at Alexandria to show him the telegram itself and to ask him on our joint behalf to use his influence with his brother-consul at Hyères to make the arrangements I have mentioned. I [am] giving Alban any undertaking he may choose to ask for that I will be responsible for and make good any expenditure that the consul at Hyères may be put to. I think that Alban will not refuse out of regard for old memories. Bear up, my dear Costi, there are only the two of us left now.
 
          Ever yours affectionately
                for John
                Hariclia

From John C. Cavafy
To Constantine Cavafy

Transcribed and edited by Katerina Ghika