It was SUPPRESSED RANDINESS
On this day in letters
Please join me in wishing the happiest of birthdays to the following letters, all written on the sixth day of a February gone by.
Beethoven always sounds to me like the upsettings of bags of nails, with here and there an also dropped hammer.
Letter to John Brown
6th February 1881
I prefer to write to Virginia—not that I have anything to say except that I love her and wish she were not ill ... Do you know what I believe it was, apart from the 'flu? It was SUPPRESSED RANDINESS. So there.
Letter to Virginia Woolf
6th February 1929
I wish to inform you that Saturday night between 9:25 and 9:36 I called three times asking to be connected with Mrs. Elizabeth Fincher who is my mother-in-law, who has been in your hospital intermittently since May of 1959, and who has been in it, in a private room, steadily since before Christmas. On each of my three telephone calls I was informed that no such person existed in your slaughter house, and was referred to your admission desk. I do not wish to be admitted to your hospital, and I would never again enter a dog into it. I have paid all bills regularly, and I insist that this woman be listed with your telephone operators, as at least a temporary resident of the death house which you operate so expensively. If I ever call again and am told that she is not there, I shall give you all the trouble that murderers deserve.
Mistakes are to be forgiven but stupidity is a crime.
Letter to Cedars of Lebanon Hospital
6th February 1960
[Hours after the death of King George VI]
It is impossible for me to grasp what has happened, last night he was in wonderful form and looking so well, and this morning, only a few hours ago, I was sent a message that his servant couldn’t waken him.
I flew to his room, & thought that he was in a deep sleep, he looked so peaceful and then I realised what had happened.
It is hard to grasp, he was such an angel to the children & me, and I cannot bear to think of Lilibet, so young to bear such a burden.
I do feel for you so darling Mama—to lose two dear sons, and Bertie so young still, & so precious—It is almost more than one can bear.
Letter to Queen Mary
6th February 1952
I have just written you a long letter.
On reading it over, I have thrown it into the waste paper basket.
Hoping this will meet with your approval,
Your obedient Servant
Lieutenant Colonel Alfred D. Wintle
Letter to the editor of The Times
I am occasionally depressed now, or discouraged, especially when I wonder about the future, but instead of fearing these low spots as the beginning of a bottomless whirlpool, I know I have already faced The Worst (total negation of self) and that, having lived through that blackness, like Peer Gynt lived through his fight with the Boyg1, I can enjoy life simply for what it is: a continuous job, but most worth it. My existence now rests on solid ground; I may be depressed now and then, but never desperate. I know how to wait.
Letter to her mother
6th February 1956