1 1 4 D O C U M E N T 9 7 D E C E M B E R 1 9 2 7 prewar Russia. In all conscience, guided by truly cultural points of view, he con- stantly published his opinions opposing both the right and the left. If I wanted to be well-informed about the various groups, I would begin by taking him as my guide. Although he and his wife and several half-grown-up children are living in serious need,[5] I’m sure that he will be able to keep his own interest clearly separated from the general interest. Dear, dear Einstein! I can’t help having, I hope unjustifiably, the painful feeling that I am becoming more and more distant from you. I UNDERSTAND that very well, because we are getting older and older and so inevitably more and more new people enter our lives, and the old connections necessarily fade more and more. I understand it, and I WANT absolutely nothing from you. All I really want is to re- tain the feeling, the very vague feeling, that we COULD react warmly to one an- other if someday it suddenly CAME DOWN TO THAT! This and similar ILLUSIONS are necessary and sufficient to prevent us from gradually experienc- ing the world as a gray, empty hole. Although it is hard to understand, the recent music I have happened to come across in disconnected fragments (Honegger, Hindemith)[6] is, along with other ar- tistic expressions, beginning to exercise a remarkably strong power over me, and influences above all my reaction to all older art, which is not VERY high. I now regret very much that I cannot become acquainted, under good guidance, with the best performances of these trends. For months, under a gray cloud cover in the fog and rainy fog! I long TERRI- BLY for snow with sun and big old trees high in the mountains! I long for strong[7] COLORS!!!! Dear, dear Einstein! Think of me from time to time with a little warm fondness! I’m so sorry that you have worries and vexations![8] Warmest regards, your P. Ehrenfest Greetings to your wife from me, and to Ilse and Margot![9] You really don’t need to reply!!![10] Couldn’t you at least lure Tanitschka away from this gray swamp [once] she has her “doctoral exam” after Christmas[11]— She has to get out! (Zurich?!— Ham- burg?) My wife is feeling particularly well in Simferopol and is keeping busy with all her activities.[12] She is really a splendid person!
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