Letter 5, page 3

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Vincent van Gogh, letter to Émile Bernard, Arles, ca. 22 May 1888, Letter 5, page 3

Pen and brown/black ink on one vertically folded sheet of cream, machine-made laid paper

Thaw Collection, given in honor of Charles E. Pierce, Jr., 2007

MA 6441.5

the women of our boulevard—le petit—usually
sleep alone at night because they screw five or six times during the day or the evening and—late at
night it's that honorable carnivore, their pimp, who comes to collect them and take them home; yes,
but he doesn't sleep with them (only rarely). The worn-out and haggard woman usually goes to bed
alone and sleeps a leaden sleep. But with two or three lines redone, it'll be there.

What have you painted now? I myself have done a still life with—a coffeepot in blue enameled
iron—a royal blue cup and saucer, a milk jug with pale cobalt and white checks, a cup with orange
and blue designs on a white background, a blue majolica jug with green, brown, pink flowers and
foliage, all of it on a blue tablecloth against a yellow background. With these pieces of crockery,
two oranges, and three lemons. It's thus a variation of blues enlivened by a series of yellows ranging
all the way to orange.

Then I have another still life, some lemons in a basket against a yellow background.

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© 2007 Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam