[En route to Boston—Tuesday, 26 June 1860]

Tuesday 26th The water has been beyond conception blue and beautiful during our trip. I could sit hours looking out upon it. I do think the worst part of the voyage is there is no private place in which to hide oneself and forget ones discomforts in concentrated thought upon some thing or other. It is delightful to chat now and then but not all day. Nevertheless we have had a wonderfully good time and I hope I am truly thankful. I can hardly believe our dear home and dearer friends to be so near.

Reading today Ruskin’s last book the 5th volume of Modern Painters. Speaking of leaves he says “under every oppression of external accident the group yet follows a law laid down in its own heart; and all the members of it whether in sickness or health, in strength or languor combine to carry out this first and last heart law; receiving and seeming to desire for themselves and for each other only life which they may communicate and loveliness which they may reflect.” Is not this the aim of all living and loving souls their aspiration and their daily prayer and should we not worship Nature here as everywhere when we find the very leaves repeating God’s words to us?

We are very near Halifax. I can hardly contain myself when I remember how near home we are.


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