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Hal Bush <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 15 Apr 2008 10:32:14 -0500
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On 4/15/08 10:18 AM, "Steve Courtney" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> And after Susie died in 1896, Clemens wrote that Twichell was the only one he
> wanted to correspond with because he had "the touch that heals, not
> lacerates."


Hartford. Nov.2.1897


Dear old Mark;


       We have been reading, and re-reading, and again reading your ³In
Memoriam² with the accompaniment of a gray autumn sky and the falling leaves
to blend with its unspeakable heart=breaking sadness; its aching, choking
pathos.  It sets all chords of memory and of love a tremble.  It renews the
pain of the sense of Lifeıs inscrutable mystery, and of the mystery of human
experience.  It renews, also, (may I say?) the deep and solemn gladness of
the faith that God in whose awful Hand we all are held, is, when you get to
the end of things, Love.  But I will not talk about it: in fact it seems to
impose hush and silence upon me.  This, however, I would say: if there be
those who are thinking ³Can this be Mark Twain?² I am not one of them.  I
have long known that it was in you to chant the music of the hidden soul
conversing with the Fathomless Elements, and as I followed your yearning
throbbing song of Grief and inextinguishable Regret, my inward comment was
³It is he: none other than my Mark Twain.²  Mark: it made me love you so
that it hurt; and, of course, I felt Livy and the girls behind you; the
whole dear group was there; with the beloved Shadow in the midst; and
bending over all, the angel of Tears and Sorrow.  ³Weeping may endure for a
night, but joy cometh in the morning², says the Old book.  God send you the
dawn of that fulfillment soon.  But I trust He is already sending it.

. . . . 
       Yours everlastingly
Oh, Iıve got lots to tell you!

Harold K. Bush, Ph.D
Associate Professor
Dept. of English, Saint Louis University
St. Louis, MO  63108
314-977-3616 (w); 314-771-6795 (h)

Quote of the moment:

"Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. Aim above
morality. Be not simply good; be good for something."
        --Henry David Thoreau