Correspondence

2438.  EBB to RB

As published in The Brownings’ Correspondence, 13, 86.

[London]

Friday evening. [26 June 1846][1]

Ever dearest, I send you a bare line tonight, for it is late & I am very tired,—having .. while you were sitting by the fire .. been, for my part, driving to Highgate .. now think of that! Also it has done me good, I think, & I shall sleep for it tonight perhaps, though I am tired certainly.

Your letter shall be answered tomorrow—& here is a green answer to your leaves![2]—what leaves? whence & how? My green little branch, I gathered myself out of the hedge, snatching at it from the carriage-window. The roses were gone, or nearly gone, & the few left, quite out of reach; & the leaves keep behind to assure you that they do not look for snow-storms in september. No! it was not that, they said. I am belying what they said.

I gathered them in the hedge of the pretty close green lane which you go through to Hampstead. Were you ever there, I wonder?

Dearest, I will write tomorrow—. Never are you “impatient,” inconsiderate—& as for selfishness, I have been uneasy sometimes, precisely because you are so little selfish. I am not likely to mistake .. to wrench the wrong way .. any word of yours. As for mine, it was not a mere word, when I said that you should decide everything. Could I hold out for november, or october, or for september even, if you chose against?– Indeed I could not.– We—you will think– I am yours, & if you never repent that, I shall not.– I am too entirely yours–

And so goodnight—dearest beloved!– Because you have a fire in June, is the snow to fall in september, & earth & ocean to become impassible? Ah well! we shall see!– But you shall not see that I deceive you–

I am your very own Ba

Dear brown leaves! where did they come from, beside from you?

Not a north wind. Only a north-west wind, as I could have proved to you if you had been with me! Yet it is a detestable climate, this English climate, let us all confess. Say how your head is.

Address: Robert Browning Esqre / New Cross / Hatcham / Surrey.

Postmark: 10FN10 JU27 1846 A.

Docket, in RB’s hand: 207.

Publication: RB-EBB, pp. 818–819.

Manuscript: Wellesley College.

1. Date provided by postmark.

2. EBB’s rose sprig and RB’s leaves, as well as a pansy sent by EBB to RB in letter 2546, sold as part of lot 166 in Browning Collections (see Reconstruction, H564). The flowers are all now at Wellesley.

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