From: Love-Letters of Margaret Fuller, 1845-1846
Published: 1903 New York
I must begin all the leaves this time with the sweet word, I feel so confiding and affectionate. Last night came your book—Foscolo on Petrarch. I have read this book, but am very glad to own it, and to feel with what thoughts you sent it. It was delightful too, to receive something unexpectedly. I touched my lips to the well-known characters and felt that we were together.
There came, too, a book from Mr. Delf. It was translations from the Vita Nuova and Convito of Dante with a fine head of him on the first leaf. The Vita Nuova has been one of the most cherished companions of my life. Dante has made a record which corresponds in some degree with my intuitions, as to the new life of love, although I have an idea of much, besides what he mentions, for he loved from afar and never entered into the most intimate relations. But both Dante and Petrarch, though they truly loved, did not keep themselves sacred to the celestial Venus, but turned aside in hours of weakness to a lower love. Michelangelo alone was true to his idea of love, even when he could not hope the possession of its object. But all three of these great Italians seem to me to have discerned the true nature of Love, enough to have received some of its almighty revelations.
I was glad, too, to have the book from Mr. Delf for I would like to have your best friend become mine. Yet, have no confidant as to our relationship. I have had and shall have none. I wish to be alone with you in strict communion.
I feel much happier now, about your absence; in this sense, if it is improving you, I ought to be willing, and now the summer is over, it is not so much matter. We could not have such happy times together in the winter, even if you were here, as when we could wander through the woods and fields. I will try to do without you now, only earnestly, fervently hoping you will not be debarred from visiting the East, but that November or December will see you on the lotus-bearing Nile. By the way, I wish much I had told you the story of Isis and Osiris. It is like your religion. But a time may come.
Yet yesterday a proposition was made me, which, if accepted, might take me to Europe just as you come back. Would not that be like all the rest of the Angel’s management? But I do not think it will happen so.
I want you very much to write so that I shall get letters every two or three weeks, whether you hear from me or not, for when you do not, it will always be that I do not get your address in time, and as mine is always the same, you might write as often to me; do!
Your letters to the Tribune are printed, except the last which will probably be in the daily of 16th-the others are 10th, 12th. The first and last (3d and 5th) are best; there is most of your direct observation in them. If you could mix in them personal life still more, it would improve them. Send these, too, as often as you can, that the interest may be kept alive. I expect very good ones about Paris, as you will see through veils, and want you to give free play to your feelings in writing of Switzerland and beautiful nature everywhere; there is strong practical sense enough to give enthusiasm the needed relief.
Not having heard from Mr. Tobler I went yesterday and spoke to him, but he had nothing as yet to say, if he had, would write me a note for you to-morrow.
I have had a most lovely letter from my loved brother Eugene. Brighter prospects seem dawning on him. He is now to be co-editor of a very good paper in New Orleans and in part proprietor by-and-bye, when he wishes. His love and devotion for me seem even greater than ever and there is now a prospect of our playing into one another’s hands and by-and-bye meeting. May you experience the joys of sympathy when meeting those of your blood! may they prove such that you can meet in deep congeniality of intercourse.
I often wonder when I think how entirely you have been debarred from these sweet charities, that you are so generous and good in the inmost heart and so warm and tender in life as you are! But the Angels had a care of you! For to-day with them I leave you.
I have kept open the letter, hoping to have news for you from Mr. Tobler, but he has sent no note.
This has been a very happy day with me. A dear friend came about noon to announce a joyful change in his fate and has only just left me. I am feeling very happy in the crisis that brings a noble being liberation from many woes and perplexities, but over-excited. My head throbs; it is time to go to rest, but I feel I shall not sleep and the hand trembles so, I can hardly write. I feel grateful for something manifestly right, and more noble, more confident in God than usual. I blame myself for writing in the within: “Let us love, carefully.” I ought not thus to shrink from giving or receiving pain-yes, it is most true, the fault you find in me. I am faultily sensitive, I ought to have more noble faith, I will try; we both will-will we not, loved brother, to be constantly nobler and better?
I know not that I can write more to-night. Many little events have occurred to me and I have been away; last moon at Rockaway on the noble beach with the surf rushing in, I thought of thee every night and in a sense all the time, so near wert thou, and to-night when her holy rays’ steal through my windows, I bless thee and pray that life may purify and perfect thy noble nature, until the message of thy soul be fully spoken. God grant this prayer and make it a solace to the pilgrim to know, that it lives always and more and more warmly in the heart of his Muse.
P. S. I looked all through the life of Petrarch for your pencil-marks, but had to fancy them.
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