[London—Thursday, 30 June 1859]
I did not rise early Thursday June 30th but my darling did and came bringing me flowers before I arose, lilies and roses in melodious confusion and while I lay still looking and loving him and them I heard good Mr Bennett’s voice. Soon my locks and the posies were in order and we had such a nice breakfast table talk about books, pictures, men &c.—afterward Mr Parker came in and made me feel quite unhappy he was evidently so untuned I am sorry there is cause. Jamie saw Mr Dennett. We dined in Regents’ St. talking about Leigh Hunt.
Mr Moran called for us at 7 o’clk and we drove to Hammersmith. Found Mr Hunt and his two daughters awaiting us in their tiny cottage with its white curtains and flowers in the window although it was a very poor cottage indeed we have never seen so poor a home enclosing such refinement. The dear old man talked wonderfully first of flowers and the mystery they were—“gentle household pets” he called them but whatever he said was clothed in such language expressive of both thought and feeling that we were at once enchained. He wished to talk to Mr Fields about business and loved to hear he was appreciated in America so Mr Moran and I sat at the pretty little tea-table with Miss Hunt who was so unassuming and clever, so kind-hearted and devoted that we were charmed with her and with her talk for she has read much in spite of her busy hard life and remembers all. Leigh Hunt told me Shelley loved all men, it was not in him to hate any. Once he said in fun “Hunt we write love songs why shouldn’t we write hate songs”. He said “he meant to some time poor fellow” added the dear old man. Leigh Hunt said Shelley disliked the second Mrs Godwin particularly believing her untrue—he used to say when he was obliged to dine with her “he would lean back in his chair and languish into hate.” He said no one could describe Shelley—he always was to him as if he came from the planet Mercury bearing a winged wand tipped with flame.