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Elisina Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss, February 15, 1914


February 15th 1914.Sunday.

Dearest Mildred,

I was so happy to see you—but I heard an under-music that would not come forward and challenge me, yet would not be silenced. What is it? Is not the leit-motiv of me in some way drowned in it? Why am I no longer clear before you?

Or am I dreaming all this, and nothing is changed except that sorrow has driven his point into my heart at last to make me afraid?

I spoke impatiently of Lane:Possibly Sir Hugh Percy Lane. he was one of the worst of my detractors, even while he accepted my hospitality and showed me a smiling face. And there are others like him whom I had forgotten and now seem suddenly to spring out again and make my strength seem only a feat of equipoise...

Whatever it is, or is not, let me hear it. I have no fear of light, but a horror of shadowy things.Mildred Barnes Bliss's response to this letter continues the motif of light and dark: "The dark days are commencing to challenge you"; "why search in me for the body that casts the shadow? I have tried with all my Light to be Light for you"; and "Be of stout heart and unfailing confidence in the lantern I keep burning for you"; see undated letter [4] (after February 15, 1914).

Bless you, dear dear Mildred.

Ever yours


Associated People: Hugh Percy Lane
Associated Places: Paris (France)