(06/30/1944) Aleister Crowley to Grady McMurtry

from Aleister Crowley
Bell Inn
Aston Clinton

June 30, ’44 e.v.

Dear Louis,

93. I can’t tell you how glad I was to hear from you this A.M. I was, naturally, anxious to know that you were safely across. (For sure, here we are beyond the range of the ‘robots’, I’m told.
I answer you in haste; I want to hear from you often.

All my papers locked away at 93, which I’ve sublet. Lucky! it makes my holiday of work much safer, but the need is very great; I’ve squared printer and binder, but only just. N.Y. transfer last month very poor: Jack seems to have dropped out completely. The swine Smith still works infinite mischief. Without papers, can’t be sure; but I think two more goes (July & August) make up the first quarter. I have now a comprehensive plan to square everything, which I’ll explain at more leisure.

The V-sign. In your “Magick” is a paper of illustrations of me (in hooded robe) giving the signs. It is marked in plain figures “The V-sign”. This was ’28 or ’29; but the page was reproduced from the Equinox Vol I No.2 (Sept 1909). That should suffice.

Sutherland got Lasher back (Yesterday a bomb killed Vere Menchick — woman chess champion of world & my star victim. I beat her by a 10 move combination; the 1st two moves looked like plain idiocy!
In Paris was the Cafe de la Repence, a paichion in the Palais Royal, a left-Bable place opposite Sorbonne called Ludo, and innumerable cafes.

“Kubli Khan”: do you mean Coldridge’s poem? If so, can send.

I agree about Jack’s letter

Herewith 7 Tarot cards — may they inspire you!

I enclose copy of La Gauloise or L’Etiucelle — whichever you like. I want this copied, printed, sung everywhere. You couldn’t help the work more than by getting this accepted as the National Song. The M_aise is shop soiled. This is new: a French song, English singer, American composer. Will send you copy of Roy’s music in a week or so.

93 93/93 Best of luck, see you soon! A.C.

Note: “safely across” = the passage of the English Channel when Grady went back toward the Front. “robots” = V1 flying bombs; presumably one of these gave occasion for Crowley’s remove from 93 Jermyn St. in London = “at 93.” “squared printer and binder,” = for the Book of Thoth, then going to press at a time of great scarcity of paper and binding materials. “N.Y. transfer” = money forwarded by Karl Germer for this purpose, some his own and some collected from Agape Lodge member donations. “Jack” = Jack Parsons. “The swine Smith” = W.T.Smith, founder of Agape Lodge in S.California – Crowley believed charges raised against him, rightly or wrongly, and had kicked him out. “two more goes” = further needed funds for publishing. “comprehensive plan to square everything” = refers to money advanced by Grady, later taken to cover his IXth degree dues and complicated by assignment of duties. “V-sign” = Crowley contended that he invented Churchill’s “V for Victory” gesture. “Sutherland …” = paragraph digressing on the death of a chess champion Crowley once beat by an unorthodox opening gambit. “In Paris…” = suggestions for Grady’s next liberty in Paris. “7 Tarot cards” = the only seven color reproductions of the Thoth Deck printed in Crowley’s lifetime, on tip-ins for a circular and for the book itself; this signifies that Crowley sent Grady either the circular or the separate plates. “La Gauloise” = Crowley’s short lyric poem intended to become the French national anthem. Grady was told to do what he could to get it to prominent attention. “French song” = in French. “English singer” = Crowley wrote it. “American composer” = “Roy” Leffingwell of Agape Lodge wrote music for it. Letter originally published in Thelema Lodge Calendar, October 1995

(06/30/1944) Aleister Crowley to Grady McMurtry

Note: Thank you to William Heidrick for making this image available.