letters from dickinson to unknown recipients

Thomas Johnson's Note on Letter 964



The draft remained among ED's papers. It is, however, a fair copy and perhaps was finished on a sheet now missing. The poem is one which she incorporated in a letter to Higginson, written in 1862 (no. 265). There survives another draft (AC - pencil) of the opening of the same letter, likewise a fair copy:

Dear friend,
   But of which shall I first speak - the beautiful Child, or its deep Possessor, or the little Book it is Famine to read till I have possessed -

A copy in all likelihood was sent, since the letter acknowledges receipt of a photograph of mother and child. A book has been promised.

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Commentary copyright 1998 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
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Last updated on February 25, 2008