Letters of Hartley Coleridge

By Grace Griggs Evelyn; Earl Griggs Leslie et al. | Go to book overview

LETTER 77
To MRS. SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE, No. 10 Chester Place, Regent's Park, London.

May 7, 1842.

My dear Mother

I was much relieved by the steady hand and cheerful tone of your letter--its bad news, I knew before--its better prospects were welcome, because new. I shall send Moxon a large parcel of essays soon, and then await his ultimatum. If the trowzers would not burden Mrs. Wordsworth, I should be thankful for them. Too few Trowzers don't become a Gentleman. With respect to the washing bill, and others, I confess a sin of omission. I ought to spare dear Mrs. W. all the trouble I can. I wish, my dear Mother, I could confidently promise that those should [be] the last bills of mine you should ever see, but I dare not promise this; all I can do, is, by self-denial and industry to diminish them as much as I can. I am afraid you may justly reproach me with not making hay when the sun-shined, but you are too much a Christian to reproach me with the irrevocable past.

I greatly love and admire Derwent's promptitude in H.N.C.; he acted as he ought to and I think, under the circumstances, I should have done the same. You do not, my dear Mother, tell me in your letter, how Derwent Jun.['s] fracture happened, nor whether a dangerous one. Fell says that at his age the bones knit easily. I hope it will produce no lasting lameness or deformity.

My dear Mother, you will perhaps not blame me, because in all the complication of affliction, I have thought more of you than of the actual sufferers. For them, I had, and have hope. They naturally look forward. It was ever my disposition to look back, and now I must look back--even for the hope wherein I am to walk in the narrow path towards Eternity.

That for a time I forgot you, at least that your image was at one time no very welcome visitor in my memory's chambers, is most true. But think not it is so now. Grey hairs have brought me, if not wisdom, and reflection, at least retrospection. I think of you daily, hourly, above all nightly, for I dream of you or Derwent almost every night. I regret the space that parts us. I think I could make any possible exertion, or endure any possible privation, for any given

-254-

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