From: Clarice Lispector
To: Tania Kaufmann

Bern, July 6, 1948

My little darling,

If you could know how exciting it was to receive the gifts for the baby! I can tell you that I received things from other people and that I rate as “cold” the feelings I had when I received them – in comparison with what I experienced when I received the baby bedding and the nightgown. They are delights of delicacy and good taste and intention. I imagined the child using all that – and more – you holding her. Thank you, my Naninha, for the delicacy of your choice. The embroidery is very fine and made for a baby… – If I could choose a time for you to win the lottery, darling, I would ask for it to happen after the child is born. Because coming to Europe to go in and out of the health care facility, and to only get to know Bern, is little. I want you to win the lottery and come here when I can go with you to Paris and show things to my dear sister. I adore you, darling, God bless you and give you joy. – I never got to see Mr. Koogan. He called me from Montreal saying he intended to come to Bern and then he would personally give me your package. And that if he couldn’t come, he would call me and send me the package at the same time by mail. Well, he didn’t call me, he just sent it to me. And as I expected him to call me again, I didn’t take note of the hotel he was in (my memory is kind of bad and I can only remember things by writing them down). Not knowing about his hotel, I cannot take advantage of the kindness with which he offered to take things to you. Who knows he may still call me.

A colleague of Maury who is going to Brazil is in Switzerland. I’ll see if he takes my book. And, according to his face when I ask this favor, I will ask him to take at least one chocolate for dear Filomeninha. – I don’t know if you know that Agir does not want or cannot publish my book – the fact is that the answer was negative. Therefore I am without a publisher. I’m in the mood to send the book to Brazil with this young man. Give it Lucio to read. What I want is for this book to be out of here. Improving it is impossible for me. And besides, I urgently need to get rid of it. When you give the book to Lucio, don’t talk about getting a publisher. I myself will perhaps write a letter. I don’t even have the courage to ask you to read it, darling. It is such a pain in the ass, honestly. And you may suffer from telling me that you don’t like it and that you’re sorry to see me lost, literarily speaking… Anyway, do whatever you want, whatever costs you less. I hope one day to be able to get out of this vicious cycle into which my “soul” has fallen. – Agir has already asked me twice for a copy of the contract for The Chandelier. Do you have it? Do you want to send it to them? – Mozart, Eliane, and the child took a vacation and stopped by. Eliane and the girl soon went to the mountain and Mozart stayed with us for two weeks, he leaves tomorrow.

-I am in good health, I’m just suffering from a bad stomach burn… I’m 70 kilos … But I don’t look fat. I think that all this weight comes partly from me, partly from the child, and partly from the “layette” that a child brings with it: water, placentas, etc. The doctor said I am very well, the child is developing very well and that everything is completely normal. Here’s a little picture that an Englishman took of us a few days ago. In it I am a little favored… But at least you see that I’m fine. The portrait was taken on a trip to Interlaken. – I don’t even mind that you didn’t send the cake … Because I would even find it a sacrilege to eat it. I would certainly wake up at night to eat the crumbs. My little darling, my little country flower, God bless you. Take care of yourself, my dear sister, never let fatigue take over, never let yourself be carried away by any depression. Be cheerful, be happy. Do mental and moral hygiene, do not let yourself be overwhelmed by annoyances from maids or work. Alright, darling? Don’t worry about me either: I’m fine, everything will proceed perfectly, with total comfort, a good doctor, a good clinic. So there is really no need to worry. I am not even afraid of childbirth or pain. Rest assured.

Give me a hug, darling, be very happy. Give William a hug, and Marcia a kiss. Tell her that the baby sends a kiss.

Yours always, Clarice