Saturday, August 7


... so late the night waxes & so still, huddled on its hilltop under the winter stars, the little old black town sleeps. I snatch the small backwater of an hour -- of a quarter of an hour, from complications & preoccupations ... No one, at any rate, I firmly believe, squeezes more of the whole fragrance out of your exquisite work than I do. The sense & the sound, the colour & the taste, the meaning of every stroke & the felicity of every -- felicity: these things I am at home in as in the very lap of the Muse ... Don't intermit -- don't languish -- don't not do anything that ever occurs to you: for I desire & require you with the revolving season ...

-- Henry James Letter to Sarah Orne Jewett 24 December 1899