Summer 1900, "Dearest, It is Sunday afternoon, almost five o'clock"

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Summer 1900, "Dearest, It is Sunday afternoon, almost five o'clock"




Woolley speaks of missing Marks, God, a package she sent, work


Mary Woolley


July 9 1900





Text Item Type Metadata


Dearest, it is Sunday
afternoon, almost five
o’clock and now that
mamma and I are alone
once more and the house
is quiet, I am going
to treat myself to that
which I most love, a
little talk with my
darling. I cannot trust
myself to think of the
other way of talking, of
the delight of looking into
your eyes as I talk, and
seeing every change of
expression on the face that
I love so dearly - Your face
is before me constantly Sweet-
heart-, your dear, dear
face, until I can stand
the longing for the reality
no longer and go to my
room, where I can put
my head down on the
bed and fight for self
control and calm, all
alone with God. It was a
comfort last night to
read the verses in St.
John and to realize
that perhaps at that
very moment you
were reading the same ones,
then I prayed - I have
heard people talk of “long-
ing” in prayers and it
seemed to me then that
I knew what they meant -
for I plead with God to
keep you in safety and peace
and to give me
some comfort, I would
not have Him take away
the hourly longing for you.
Life is so much richer
because of the love which
makes me feel its incom-
pleteness every minute
that I am away from
you, that I cannot ask to
have Him make my feeling
different, but I must be
calmer - how the feeling
uppermost is of such
longing for you, that I
cannot reason with myself.
I can simply say - “Oh!
I cannot see now, my
darling, my darling,” and
that keeps saying itself over
and over to me, while I
work, while I sit in church,
while I am on my knees
praying --- where I
am, whatever I am doing,
Darling, you are so much
my life that I am maimed
when you are away from
me, I am hurt and sore
and I cry out that I
cannot stand it, that I
must be with you - Dearest,
this must not be - I must
be brave, and I shall
pray daily, hourly for
courage to face life for
the little time before we
shall be together again,
I hope, for always.
Do you remember that I
was almost frightened when
you said that you had
entrusted your life to
me,that your faith, your
courage, your everything,
depended upon me? I
was frightened - I felt
almost like saying that
you must not, that I could
not, dared not, take the
awful responsibility. I do not
feel so now--God is first--
both of us are in His hands,
but as far as human
trust can go, I joy in the
realization that you have
given yourself to me in this
way-- It is what I have done,
my darling - I have put
my life into your hands,
dearest, for the great over-
powering love of which I
had never dreamed before,
has come to me and nothing
can ever separate us, my
other and better self.
You will never know how you
help me, Jeannette - I
feel it in an hundred
ways, I shall try this
summer to be so patient
and unselfish, as you
would be and are, dearest-
to be so entirely truthful
in every act and word and
thought----to be just what
is worthy of my darling and
of her love- for you, dearest,
I shall pray that you may
be entirely well and happy-
I can stand my own
loneliness, but when I
think of you as ill or
lonely or sad, it chokes
me- Darling, you must real-
ize that I am with you,
that my love is about you,
that I am thinking of you
that I love you as no one
else in the world can love
you, that you are my love,
the sweetest woman in the
world. I told you well
that I felt always like lavish-
ing my love upon you. I
do now, even on cold, un-
sympathetic paper- I feel
that I cannot say again,
and again, what you have
heard so often and what
you know so well. It
comforts me, at this evening
hour, when my longing for
you is so great. I am
with my dear little mother,
with whom I am so happy
to be, but that makes me
realize what you are to
me, my dearest, when
this great loneliness and long-
ing for you comes to me
here, last night I went
upstairs at half-after nine
and took my bath, but it
was after eleven when I
went to sleep - Darling, I
was so lonely that great
sobs came into my throat
and I prayed that the
ache in my heart might
be taken away, and that I
might sleep - but even in
my sleep I was thinking
of you, confused, wandering
dreams that I could not
remember this morning.
Dearest, of what sign do you
wish the little picture?
Will you let me know that
I may see Horton [??] about it.
Monday noon.
Your letter, written on the
train, is such a comfort,
Sweet-heart - I feel better
already, and am concerned
that I did not write you
more cheerfully Saturday
afternoon. However, I will here-
I will send the tone, baseline
and plaster this afternoon- The
dental floss I do not find, but
will look again, before I pack
the bag. Your skirt has not
yet come- I will forward
it immediately when it
does arrive.
I hope that the little pin
will reach you safely
dearest, and that you will
enjoy wearing it as much as
I do your ring. It is the
greatest comfort to me, for
it brings you near-
Erving and his wife have
been with us over Sunday
and are just now starting
for Boston, on their way
back to Point Allerton.
I am planning going into work
this week - have been writing
letters most of the morning
but it will take weeks to
reduce the pile to anything
like respectable proportions.
I have also washed slacks
and neckties and been busy
generally. I wish that Erving
might have been here your
Sunday - he is a dear
boy and I should like you
to know each other better,
Darling, the “lives” are
such a comfort to me.
They are in “our” Bible,
at the place in John
where I am reading and
I read them too, every
night - Last night I
dreamed that you are
with me and it was
such a disappointment
to wake and find that I
was mistaken.
Mamma sends her love-
My father was quite [crossout] aggrieved
because you did not send
your “love” to him!
Darling, darling - I must
say good-bye for this
afternoon - tonight I
shall begin another talk
with my dearest.
Your own May-
288, High Street,
Pawtucket, Rhode Island,
July ninth, nineteen-hundred



Mary Woolley, “Summer 1900, "Dearest, It is Sunday afternoon, almost five o'clock",” Digital Exhibits of the Archives and Special Collections, accessed June 20, 2019,

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