Louis D. Brandeis: An Inspiring Life
Marriage & family items

Letter from Louis D. Brandeis to Alice Goldmark

October 12, 1890

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My dear good Alice:

How long it seems since I woke this morning, and I have been with you alone nearly all the day.

R[eginald] Gray and Maynard came for the ride about eleven; we had two hours across country with a half-dozen fences to warm the blood; but much time wandered quietly through the woods, the men sympathized with nature and said nice things of you, and I was glad to be with them. This was all that I saw of my fellow beings except the Cabots for a moment in the afternoon. They were out for a ride & came over to bring me their congratulations.

After lunch and a siesta, I wandered off to the Charles.

Sky and river were of intense blue[,] the sun shone brightly and the red maples were reflected in all their glory. As we glided along quietly (the canoe & I) it seemed as if we were on the voyage of eternal peace. I thought, Alice, how you will love the canoe, and how well it expresses you: the silent dignity, strong but tender, sensitive to the slightest touch, responsive to every word, listening with blended head to each whisper of nature, with a heart for all human emotions and a soul to grasp the divine. Canoeing is not a sport; that were to make it frivolous and ignoble. It is the great interpreter of nature—unarticulate poetry, dumb music.

Dear, I felt ashamed at the neglected look of the canoe. It needs of scraping and of varnish, & bands and patches to make her tight, reproached me. I recalled how long this had been so—and how before you came to me I had not the interest to put her in order. Today I was thinking of the joy of working over the canoe with you by my side.

Alice, Alfred was wrong in saying I am “very much in love.” No this is not a passion, not a fever with which I have fallen. It is that I love you, for the light has come to [me], as faith and religion sometimes come to man.

At dusk I started off for town. Long ride by star light was a fitting ending for the day. The air was crisp Sunday and the darkness added to the peace.

Good night, dear

CREATOR Louis D. Brandeis
DATE 10/12/1890
FORMAT Text (Letter)
COLLECTION Louis Dembitz Brandeis Collection
BOX, SERIES 6, I.I.b.1
RIGHTS Copyright restrictions may apply. For permission to copy or use this image, contact the Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections Department, Brandeis University Library