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208 pages, Paperback
First published January 1, 1973
Does anything in nature despair except man?
I am accused of disloyalty because I talk about things that many people would keep to themselves...I am not at all discreet about anything that concerns feeling. My business is the analysis of feeling.
In this house the light has always been a presence—right now in a brilliant blue-green band on the sofa in the cozy room. A half hour ago it spotlit a pot of yellow chrysanthemums in there. I look out at trees leafless now except for one maple, where high up against the blue there is still branch after branch of translucent warm gold. The leaves sift down one by one like notes in music. This is the light we have been deprived of this queer autumn of tropical rains and gray skies, and it is good to have a taste of it.
An island of tall fir and spruce, of many-colored soft mosses, blueberry patches, and a long open meadow that rolls down to a salt-water pool. We come here to a timeless world, steeped in tradition, where for a week or so we are sheltered by the safety and comfort of the Victorian era when the many-roomed, shingled ark of a house was built by Anne’s father, in the 1890’s. We come back to all the familiar joys –sitting on our balcony to watch the silent sails glide past up the Sound and the ever-changing clouds and light and shadow on the water and on the hills, gathering mussels or blueberries for supper, making bunches of wildflowers, finding tiny trees and cushions of moss for Japanese gardens to be created when we are home again, going to bed with a candle up the great staircase (there is no electricity), sinking into our twin beds and talking for hours side by side before we fall asleep.
One must believe that private dilemmas are, if deeply examined, universal, and so, if expressed, have a human value beyond the private, and one must also believe in the vehicle for expressing them, in the talent.