First, I know last week I posted a snip it of a story idea that came to my mind but I have decided two works in progress was enough for me to handle. I have been loving these letters as a way to retell one of my novels Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell. Second, I am happy and surprised that this story has lasted so long since it really just came out of a free-write in April, but I have been enjoying this project and I hope you have too.
I am at a loss of what to say. I cannot breath. My heart is broken. How can you be gone?
Everyone thought you were on the mend and now you are gone. I wonder if you even hear my last letter and if it in any small brought you comfort. It probably came at the time when you were at your worse and you never heard it, and you will not hear this or read this as you are now gone.
People will think it is odd to write to you now that you are dead but you were my truest comfort and it only feels natural to write you even though you will never read this.
Oh my dearest Aunt, I am at a loss. You were truer to me than my own late mama. I barely remember her, I was only three, and looking back on it I feel as though one day she was there and then gone the next. Besides the portrait of us taken when I was baby I have no remembrance of how she looked or what it was like to be held by her. You were my second mother, no matter what my new mama tells me.
I feel I cannot cry around her, she so hates to see grief. My one comfort at this moment is Cassie who lets me sit and cry on her shoulder. She is always so generous and loving. Her beauty on the outside reflects the pureness of her heart. I do not know how I would get through this moment without her strength.
I am being selfish. I wish I could be with Uncle, Ozzie and Hugh. I do not know how they are baring it. Uncle and Ozzie were quite tense with each other when I left, they did not speak of it but it was felt at every moment. They both depended on you so much. And poor Hugh to lose another mother. How will he feel this deeply? Oh my dearest aunt, I am sorry if we took advantage of your kindness, your love, and strength. If you can see us now, I hope you can see how desperately we need you. You were the cornerstone of our family. I do not know whats going to happen.
I do wish my new mama would let me come to see them all but she claims that I would be a burden to them. I hope I was never a burden to you. Mama also claims we have engagements that we are to keep, I do not know how I am to keep up appearances when my heart is so broken.
I will stay faithful to you and keep you updated on the events of my life. In that I feel I keep you with me.
All my love.
We buried you today. That feels odd to write. Unreal almost. The minister talked about your soul being in heaven and I do so hope you are at peace.
The service was beautiful practically everyone in town attended.And my dear uncle stood as a rock not letting anyone see his heartbreak. You would have been embarrassed by the amount of tears Ozzie had for you, I think he feels your loss more than anyone.He told me you were always his biggest supporter and now he does not know how he will get on from one day to the next. I wanted to remind him of his wife and the support she will provide, but as I promised him and myself to never speak of it I did not feel right to mention it. The service was beautiful and I felt it truly reflected the beauty that is in your life. I hope you got to look down from heaven and see how much we down here love you. Hugh was so good to me and let me sit up front as if I was intimate family. Mama and Cassandra did not attend as Mama was called to The Towers this morning and Cassandra accompanied. I would have appreciated her company and have her meet Hugh, Ozzie and Uncle but I know when Mama puts her mind to something it is hard to dissuade her.
Not much else to write, but I did want to copy down the poem Hugh read, he said it was your favorite. I think Hugh was the only one who could read a loud at the moment...
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I've heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.
I knew you liked Dickinson but I did not know that was your favorite. I will carry it with me from now on.
All my love.