Eliot also said himself that the poem came out of that part of his life. But I am surprised that he made such a comment about the War after the way he often described its impact when it was going on. Several letters in the first volume make a great point of how terrible it is for everyone, and his own attempts to enlist toward the end when the US joined were deeply distressing for him.
I want to read this review.

>>> John Angell Grant <[log in to unmask]>01/23/13 4:51 PM >>>
No Vivien, no Waste Land.

It's been said before, but it's said again in this review of col. 4 of the letters:

In a rare newspaper interview in 1994, Valerie Eliot said that her husband wrote The Waste Land because Vivian made him suffer. “We owe the poem to her, no question: he wouldn’t have written it if she hadn’t given him such hell.” And in oblique confirmation of this claim, in a letter included here, discussing The Waste Land with E M Forster on August 10 1929, Eliot says: “You exaggerate the importance of the War… The Waste Land might have been just the same without the War.” It is perhaps not surprising that during the last near-decade of Eliot’s life when his second marriage gave him unprecedented happiness that his creative output diminished accordingly.