Letter from Louis D. Brandeis to Alice Goldmark
October 12, 1890
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|
|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|