Emily Dickinson's Correspondences
Correspondence with Susan Dickinson

H L21a           Sabbath evening


I have been very busy since you went away, but that is'nt the reason I've not written to you, and we've had a great deal of company too, but that is not the reason - I was foolish eno' to be vexed at a little thing, and I hope God will forgive me, as he'll have to many times, if he lives long enough.

Thro' Austin, I've known of you, and nobody in this world except Vinnie and Austin, know that in all the while, I have not heard from you.

Many have asked me for you, and I have answered promptly that you had reached there safely, and were better every day, and Susie, do you think, H. Hinsdale came to our

[Upside down atop first page:]
Pat "still lives." I am going to meeting now - Meet me at the Academy, and we will sit together. Mrs Timothy Smith and Mrs Noble Goodale take turns sitting by me now. Mrs Goodale got me the last time.

H L21b

house several days ago; came just to ask for you, and went away supposing I'd heard from you quite often. Not that I told her so, but spoke of you so naturally, in such a daily way, she never guessed the fact that I'd not written to you, nor had you thus to me.

Never think of it, Susie - never mention it - I trust your truth for that, but when you meet, and I meet - we'll try and forgive each other. There has not been a day, Child, that I've not thought of you, nor have I shut my eyes upon a summer night, without your sweet remembrance, and tho' full much of sorrow has gathered at your name, that ought but peace was 'tween us, yet I remembered on, and bye and bye the day came. I do not miss you Susie - of course I do not miss you - I only sit and stare at nothing from

H L21c

my window, and know that all is gone. Dont feel it -no - any more than the stone feels, that it is very cold, or the block, that it is silent, where once 'twas warm and green, and birds danced in it's branches.

I rise, because the sun shines, and sleep has done with me, and I brush my hair, and dress me, and wonder what I am and who has made me so, and then I wash the dishes, and anon, wash them again, and then 'tis afternoon, and Ladies call, and evening, and some members of another sex come in to spend the hour, and then that day is done. And, prithee, what is Life? There was much that was sweet Commencement week - much too that was dusty, but my bee gathered many drops of the sweetest and purest honey -

I had many long talks with Emmons, which I will not forget, and

H L21d

a charming farewell ride, before he went away - he stayed more than a week after Commencement was done, and came to see me often - He brought his Hadley friend to pass the day with me, and we passed it very sweetly - Her name is Susie too, and that endeared me to her.

I shall miss Emmons very much. Father and mother were gone last week, upon a little journey - and we rested somewhat, like most ungodly children - John came down twice from Sunderland, to pass a day with us. Susie, I wished for you - Tell that little Sister of your's, I would have welcomed her - She understands the orgies! When Mr Pan Prankin takes his leave, I trust to hear from her - Until then, "Mr Bugby understands it perfectly." It's of no use to write to you - Far better bring dew in my thimble to quench the endless fire - My love for those I love - not many - not very many, but dont I love them so? - and Vinnie's love and Mother's for Martha and for you. Write if you love, to Emilie -


H L21

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Image reproduced by permission of the Houghton Library, Harvard University. Not to be reproduced in whole or in part without permission.
Transcription and commentary copyright 1996 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
Last updated on July 24, 1998
Maintained by Tanya Clement <tclement@umd.edu>