3 April 1956
I was just standing here twiddling my thumbs wondering what it was I’d forgotten to do when it came to me—write to you. So here I am. As was predicted yesterday, we had a mail call today—I got two letters from you, with the clippings about Sandy. Good Lord, but we have a crazy family. The last letter was dated 30 March, & this being only the 3rd of April, I’d say it made excellent time.
Lloyd wants to go to a bullfight when we get to Valencia. I have absolutely no desire to. Maybe I’ll go to take pictures of the pomp & ceremony, but I can’t see watching a bunch of mad animals screaming for blood. I’m talking about the animals not directly engaged in the slaughter; those who sit in the stands & chomp hot dogs, watching the blood spurt from a safe distance, through beady, inhuman eyes.
Ah, but there I go, preaching again. Forgive me if I get carried away at times.
At times, such as now, I feel as though I could write words that would be remembered as long as there are people to remember. But then something always gets in the way, & I end up doing nothing—or at best scribbling a few sentences in a book of dead stories.
I once wrote a poem; did you know that? It was written down in Pensacola & was quite fatalistic & very revealing. But it got lost somewhere along the line. It had something to do with the last leaf on the last tree in the world, which was about to be drowned by the rising seas. The rhyme scheme itself was quite da da, da da, da da, da DA-ish, if I recall. But I liked it & wish I could remember it. Oh, well.
I was just thinking—if someone could take a battering ram & knock down these walls I’ve built around myself, I wonder what they’d find? Either something about two inches high that looks like it just crawled out from under a wet rock, or an explosion so great & powerful it would put the sun to shame.
Always I have the feeling that people are in mental cocoons; some of them more developed than others—& I keep waiting for us to come out of them—to turn ourselves into the butterfly I’ve always expected myself to be.
Sometimes, when I try to think very hard, I can actually feel it—like trying to push against a gigantic door. And there’s always the maddening idea that it would be easy to open, if we only knew how. Once again, "oh, well."
Thank you for the stamps, mother. They came just one step ahead of the cavalry. The last batch of cocoa you sent was in such a lousy shape that I only salvaged two bags out of the whole mess. But it’s good.
Well, dad, now that bowling’s over, what are you going to do with yourself? Why not try writing every now & then? Incidentally, if you have any pictures of the cottage, please send them to me—either the old way (to give Lloyd the general idea) or the new way—so I can get a general idea.
Regards to all the relatives.