letters from dickinson to benjamin kimball


Dear friend -

Had I known I asked the impossible, should I perhaps have asked it, but Abyss is it's own Apology.

I once asked him what I should do for him when he was not here, referring half unconsciously to the great Expanse - In a tone italic of both Worlds "Remember Me," he said. I have kept his Commandment. But you are a Psychologist, I, only a Scholar who has lost her Preceptor.

For the great kindness of your opinion, I am far indebted.

Perhaps to solidify his faith was for him impossible, and if for him, how more, for us! Your noble and tender words of him were exceedingly precious - I shall cherish them.

He did not tell me he "sang" to you, though to sing in his presence was involuntary, thronged only with Music, like the Decks of Birds.

Abstinence from Melody was what made him die. Calvary and May wrestled in his Nature.

Neither fearing Extinction, nor prizing Redemption, he believed alone. Victory was his Rendezvous -

I hope it took him home.

But I fear I detain you.

I try to thank you and fail.

Perhaps the confiding effort you would not disdain?

E. Dickinson.

thomas johnson's note on letter 968 | index to dickinson/kimball letters

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Last updated on April 14, 2000