letters from dickinson to elizabeth holland

To Mrs. J.G. Holland
From ED

spring 1881

Dear Sister.

We are making a fes simple repairs, what Dickens would call qualifications and aspects - and looking in Vinnie's Basket for the Lightning Rod, which she had mislaid, "What would Mrs Holland think" said Vinnie?

"I would inquire," I said.

I can always rely on your little Laugh, which is what the Essayist calls "the immortal PeeWee."

Did you know hat Father's "Horace" had died - the "Cap'n Cuttle" of Amherst? He had lived with us always, though was not congenial - so his loss is a pang to Tradition, rather than Affection - I am sure you remember him - He is the one who spoke patronizingly of the Years, of Trees he sowed in "26," or Frosts he met in "20," and our first Antiquity - I remember he was at one time disinclined to gather the Winter Vegetables till they had frozen, and when Father demurred, he replied "Squire, ef the Frost is the Lord's Will, I dont popose to stan in the way of it." I hope a nearer inspection of that "Will" has left him with as ardent a bias in it's favor.

Vinnie is under terrific headway, but finds time to remember you with vivid affection - and Mother is unchanged, though my gratitude every morning, that she is still with us, convinces me of her frailty.

Vinnie is eager to see the Face of George Eliot which the Doctor promised, and I wince in prospective, lest it be no more sweet. God chooses repellant settings, dont he, for his best Gems?

All you will say of yourselves is dear to Emily and Vinnie, and is'nt to say it soon - prudent - in so short a Life?

thomas johnson's note on letter 692 | index to dickinson/holland letters

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