Category: Love Letters
Dearest, Dearest: How long has this happened? You don't tell me the day or
the hour. Is it ever since you last wrote? Then you have been in pain and
grief for four days: and I not knowing anything about it! And you have no
hand in the house kind enough to let you dictate by it one small word to
poor me? What heartless merrymakings may I not have sent you to worry you,
when soothing was the one thing wanted? Well, I will not worry now, then;
neither at not being told, nor at not being allowed to come: but I will
come thus and thus, O my dear heart, and take you in my arms. And you will
be comforted, will you not be? when I tell you that even if you had no
legs at all, I would love you just the same. Indeed, dearest, so much of
you is a superfluity: just your heart against mine, and the sound of your
voice, would carry me up to more heavens than I could otherwise have
dreamed of. I may say now, now that I know it was not your choice, what a
void these last few days the lack of letters has been to me. I wondered,
truly, if you had found it well to put off such visible signs for a while
in order to appease one who, in other things more essential, sees you
rebellious. But the wonder is over now; and I don't want you to write--not
till a consultation of doctors orders it for the good of your health. I
will be so happy talking to you: also I am sending you books:--those I
wish you to read; and which now you _must_, since you have the leisure!
And I for my part will make time and read yours. Whose do you most want me
to read, that my education in your likings may become complete? What I
send you will not deprive me of anything: for I have the beautiful
complete set--your gift--and shall read side by side with you to realize
in imagination what the happiness of reading them for the first time ought
to be.

Yesterday, by a most unsympathetic instinct, I went out for a long tramp
on my two feet; and no ache in them came and told me of you! Over
Sillingford I sat on a bank and looked downhill where went a carter. And
I looked uphill where lay something which might be nothing--or not his.
Now, shall I make a fool of myself by pursuing to tell him he may have
dropped something, or shall I go on and see? So I went on and saw a coat
with a fat pocket: and by then he was out of sight, and perhaps it
wasn't his; and it was very hot and the hill steep. So I minded my own
business, making Cain's motto mine; and now feel so had, being quite
sure that it was his. And I wonder how many miles he will have tramped
back looking for it, and whether his dinner was in the pocket.

These unintentional misdoings are the "sins" one repents of all one's
life long: I have others stored away, the bitterest of small things done
or undone in haste and repented of at so much leisure afterwards. And
always done to people or things I had no grudge against, sometimes even
a love for. They are my skeletons: I will tell you of them some day.

This, dearest, is our first enforced absence from each other; and I feel
it almost more hard on me than on you. Beloved, let us lay our hearts
together and get comforted. It is not real separation to know that
another part of the world contains the rest of me. Oh, the rest of me,
the rest of me that you are! So, thinking of you, I can never be tired.
I rest yours.
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