early spring 1881
TO: Louise and Frances Norcross
The dear ones will excuse - they knew there was a cause. Emily was sick, and Vinnie's middle name [Norcross] restrained her loving pen.
The beautiful words for which Loo asked were that genius is the ignition of affection - not intellect, as is supposed, - the exaltation of devotion, and in proportion to our capacity for that, is our experience of genius. Precisely as they were uttered I cannot give them, they were in a letter that I do not find, but the suggestion was this.
It is startling to think that the lips, which are keepers of thoughts so magical, yet at any moment are subject to the seclusion of death.
. . . I must leave you, dear, to come perhaps again, -
We never know we go - when we are goingI give you my parting love.