letters from dickinson to elizabeth holland

To Mrs. J.G. Holland
From ED

early 1883

Dear Sister.

Thank you for the glimpse - The Fces are delightful -

Had I imagined Annie's friend, he looks as I believed.

The other two surprised me - Ted's, by the boyishness -

I looked for an Octogenarian flavor in a Graduate- and perhaps Austin's assurance that he wore the Supreme Court Judge's Coat, aided the delusion. The Eyes are the Father's - though why so stealthy - but the Mother's Mouth - Where to flatter is truth, what respite for flattery? The other Face is deep and sweet, a lovely Face to sit by in Life's Mysterious Boat -

I hope the missing Health is rapidly returning - and grieve any faintness should waste your second Home -

It acclimates our thought of you to see your Noble Sons -

If the Spirits are fair as the Faces "Nothing is here for Tears -"

May I present your Portrait to your Sons in Law?

To see her is a Picture -
To hear her is a Tune -
To know her an Intemperance
As innocent as June -
To know her not - Affliction -
To own her for a Friend
A warmth as near as if the Sun
Were shining in your Hand.


thomas johnson's note on letter 802 | index to dickinson/holland letters

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Commentary copyright 1998 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
Maintained by Lara Vetter <lv26@umail.umd.edu>
Last updated on January 17, 1999