Emily Dickinson's Correspondences
Correspondence with Susan Dickinson

H L6a           Monday evening.

Susie it is a little thing to say how lone it is anyone can do it, but to wear the loneness next your heart for weeks, when you sleep, and when you wake, ever missing something, this, all cannot say, and it baffles me.

I could paint a portrait which would bring the tears, had I canvass for it, and the scene should be solitude, and the figures solitude and the lights and shades, each a solitude.

I could fill a chamber with landscapes so lone, men should pause and weep there; then haste grateful home, for a loved one left. Today has been a fair day, very still and blue. Tonight, the crimson children are playing in the West, and tomorrow will be colder.

[Marginalia on left of first page:]
Susie we all love you Mother Vinnie me. Dearly!

[Upside down, atop first page:]
I have not heard from Mat for months. "They say that absence conquers." It has vanquished me.

H L6b

In all I number you. I want to think of you each hour in the day. What you are saying doing I want to walk with you, as seeing yet unseen. You say you walk and sew alone. I walk and sew alone. I dont see much of Vinnie she's mostly dusting stairs!

We go out very little once in a month or two, we both set sail in silks touch at the principal points, and then put into port again Vinnie cruises about some to transact the commerce, but coming to anchor, is most that I can do. Mr and Mrs Dwight are a sunlight to me, which no night can shade, and I still perform weekly journeys there, much to Austin's dudgeon, and my sister's rage.

I have heard it said "persecution kindles" think it kindled me! They are sweet and loving, and one thing, dear Susie, always ask

[Marginalia on left of second page:]
Your Sister Harriet is our most intimate friend.

H L6c

for you. Sunday Afternoon I left you a long while Susie, that is, in pen and ink my heart kept on. I was called down from you to entertain some company went with a sorry grace, I fear, and trust I acted with one. There is a tall pale snow storm stalking through the fields, and bowing here, at my window shant let the fellow in!

I went to church all day in second dress, and boots. We had such precious sermons from Mr Dwight. One about unbelief, and another Esau. Sermons on unbelief ever did attract me. Thanksgiving was observed throughout the state last week! Believe we had a Turkey, and two kinds of Pie. Otherwise, no change. Father went Thanksgiving night. Austin goes tomorrow, unless kept by storm. He will see you, Darling! What I cannot do. Oh could I!

[>Marginalia on left of third page:]
Mother and Vinnie send their love. Austin must carry his.

H L6d

We did not attend the Thanksgiving "Soiree" owing to our sadness at just parting with father Your sister will give particulars. Abby is much better rode horseback every day until the snow came, and goes down street now just like other girls Abby seems more gentle, more affectionate, than she has.

Eme Kellogg wonders she does not hear from you. I gave your message to her, and bring you back the same. Eme is still with Henry, tho' no outward bond has as yet encircled them. Edward Hitchcock and baby - and Mary, spent Thanksgiving here. I called upon Mary she appears very sweetly, and the baby is quite becoming to her. They all adore the baby. Mary inquired for you with a great deal of warmth, and wanted to send her love when I wrote. Susie had that been you well well! I must stop, Sister. Things have wagged, dear Susie, and they're wagging still. "Little Children, love one another." Not all of life to live, is it, nor all of death to die.

[Marginalia on left of fourth page:]
The last night of the term, John sent his love to you.


H L6

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Close-Up of H L6c | Close-Up of H L6d

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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 14, 1998
Maintained by Tanya Clement <tclement@umd.edu>