Thursday, October 18, 2012

October 18, 1845

Just a short note from a rather frustrated Browning today. He just doesn't seem able to put it into words, as usual:

"I must not go on tearing these poor sheets one after the other,—the proper phrases will not come,—so let them stay, while you care for my best interests in their best, only way, and say for me what I would say if I could—dearest,—say it, as I feel it!"
Here he draws a long line across the paper and continues:
"I am thankful to hear of the continued improvement of your brother– So may it continue with him! Pulses I know very little about– I go by your own impressions which are evidently favourable.
I will make a note as you suggest, .. or, perhaps, keep it for the closing number, (the next) when it will come fitly in with two or three parting words I shall have to say. The Rabbis make Bells & Pomegranates symbolical of Pleasure and Profit, the Gay & the Grave, the Poetry & the Prose, Singing and Sermonizing– Such a mixture of effects as in the original hour (that is quarter of an hour) of confidence & creation, I meant the whole should prove at last: well, it has succeeded beyond my most adventurous wishes in one respect– 'Blessed eyes mine eyes have been, if—' if there was any sweetness in the tongue or flavour in the seeds to her. But I shall do quite other & better things, or shame on me! The proof has not yet come .. I should go, I suppose, and enquire this afternoon—and probably I will."
'Bell & Pomegranates', the yin and yang or this and that of poetry. But she likes them and that is all that matters to him in this Autumn of courtship. He again quotes 'Catarina to Camoens' back to her. Yes, that Portuguese of poems.
"I weigh all the words in your permission to come on Monday .. do not think I have not seen that contingency from the first! Let it be Tuesday—no sooner! Meanwhile you are never away—never from your place here.
God bless my dearest
Ever your RB

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