Is it true what you tell me of G——? Is it possible? I can not believe it. Is there in the atmosphere which the earth engenders nowadays, a gas, laughing or otherwise, which suddenly seizes the brain, and carries it on to commit extravagances, as there was under the first revolution a maddening fluid which inspired one to commit cruelties? We have fallen from the Hell of Dante into that of Scarron.
Of what are you thinking, good head and good heart, in the midst of this bacchanal? You are wrathful, oh very well, I like that better than if you were laughing at it; but when you are calmer and when you reflect?
Must one find some fashion of accepting the honor, the duty, and the fatigue of living? As for me, I revert to the idea of an everlasting journey through worlds more amusing, but it would be necessary to go there quickly and change continually. The life that one fears so much to lose is always too long for those who understand quickly what they see. Everything repeats itself and goes over and over again in it.
I assure you that there is only one pleasure: learning what one does not know, and one happiness: loving the exceptions. Therefore I love you and I embrace you tenderly.
Your old troubadour G. Sand
I am anxious about Sainte-Beuve. What a loss that would be! I am content if Bouilhet is content. Is it really a good position?
I am returning to my mother next Monday, dear master. I have little hope of seeing you before then!
But when you are in Paris, what is to prevent you from pushing on to Croisset where everyone, including myself, adores you? Sainte-Beuve has finally consented to see a specialist and to be seriously treated. And he is better anyway. His morale is improving.
Bouilhet’s position gives him four thousand francs a year and lodging. He now need not think of earning his living, which is a real luxury.
No one talks of the war any more, they don’t talk of anything.
The Exposition alone is what “everybody is thinking about,” and the cabmen exasperate the bourgeois.
They were beautiful (the bourgeois) during the strike of the tailors. One would have said that society was going to pieces.
Axiom: Hatred of the bourgeois is the beginning of virtue. But I include in the word bourgeois, the bourgeois in blouses as well the bourgeois in coats.
It is we and we alone, that is to say the literary men, who are the people, or to say it better: the tradition of humanity.
Yes, I am susceptible to disinterested angers and I love you all the more for loving me for that. Stupidity and injustice make me roar,— and I howl in my corner against a lot of things “that do not concern me.”
How sad it is not to live together, dear master, I admired you before I knew you. From the day I saw your lovely and kind face, I loved you. There you are.—And I embrace you warmly.