To Miss E. A. Warner, New York, June 4, 1869.
I concluded you had gone and died and got buried without letting me know, when your letter reached me via Dorset. What possessed you to send it there when you knew, you naughty thing! that I was having General Assembly, I can’t imagine; but I suppose, being a Congregationalist, you thought General Assembly wasn’t nothing, and that I could entertain squads of D.D.s for a fortnight more or less, just as well at Dorset as I could here. My dear, read the papers and go in the way you should go, and behave yourself! As if 250 ministers haven’t worn streaks in the grass round the church, haven’t (some of ’em) been here to dinner and eaten my strawberry short-cake and cottage puddings and praised my coffee and drank two cups apiece all round, and as if I hadn’t been set up on end for those of ’em to look at who are reading Katy, and as if going furiously to work, after they’d all gone, didn’t use me up and send me “lopping” down on sofas, sighing like a what’s-its-name. Well, well; the ignorance of you country folks and the wisdom of us city folks! We hope to get to Dorset by the 17th of this month; it depends upon how many interruptions I have and how many days I have to lie by. I can’t imagine why I break down so, for I don’t know when I’ve been so well as during this spring; but Mr. P. and A. say I work like a tiger, and I s’pose I do without knowing it. I am so glad you had a pleasant Sunday. No doubt you had more bodily strength with which to enjoy spiritual things. A weak body hinders prayer and praise when the heart would sing, if it were not in fetters that cramp and exhaust it.
Monday—To-day I have been enacting the tiger again, and worked furiously. A. half scolds and half entreats, but I can’t help it; if I work I work, and so there it is. I have bought a dinner-set, and had a long visit from my old Mary, who wept over and kissed me, and am going out to call on Mrs. Woolsey this evening. To-morrow A.’s scholars are to come and make an address to her and give her a picture. She is not to know it till they arrive. It is really cold after the very hot weather, and some are freezing and some have internal pains. I wish you could have seen me this forenoon at work in the attic—a mass of dust, feathers, and perplexity. I got hold of one of my John’s innumerable trunks of papers, and found among them the MSS. of several of my books laid up in lavender, which I pitched into the ash-barrel. I suppose he thinks I may distinguish myself some time, and that the discerning world will be after a scratch of my gifted pen! Have you read “Gates Off the Hinges”? The next thing will be, “There Aint no Gates.”
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The new Home in Dorset. What it became to her. Letters from there.