Adele De Leeuw to
Her Sister(I)

My dearest,
You've gone.And I can never get you backagain??except by talking to you.It's childish,Iknow.But perhaps it will give me some relief fromthe pent-up sorrow that makes me feel as if myheart will burst.
How often we gently scorned the people whoused euphemisms for death!“She has left us.”“Hehas passed over.”Where was their strength,wewondered,that they could not acknowledge deathfor what it was,and speak of it as death?I understand them a little better now.But at least Iwill demand of myself the will to call death by itsown name.
I know what they were trying to do.Theywere attempting to conceal the ultimate least until they could bear it.Nature bestows anumbness on us at first,giving us time to adjust tothe brutal truth.But the numbness does not lastlong enough,and the truth breaks through the veiland stabs us again and again.
Friends have been marvelous.They have surrounded me with affection and concern;theytalk or fall silent as they perceive my mood;theybring gifts of flowers or themselves;they plan littleoutings and include me in their gatherings.Theywrite letters that make the tears stream down myface,because they appreciated you so...they tellme,in warm words,how sweet you were,how brilliant,how witty,how talented,and how blessedthey were to know you.It is a comfort to read oftheir appreciation,to realize that they were awareof all your wonderful qualities.But my loss,as I goover their words,grows greater and greater.I amutterly bereft.I have been abandoned;I feel as if apart of me has been amputated.For we were soclose,we knew each other so well,we were soattuned to each other's moods??different thoughwe were in a dozen respects.
There was one letter that helped me more thanmost.It came from an editor whom you never met.She told me something which has been a kind ofbulwark,for she said,“No one truly dies who isremembered with love.”
And I know this is true.I remember you withlove.I remember everything about you,with undying love.When I think I cannot stand theloneliness any more,something will come to mind,something that I loved in you and it gives me thecourage,if only momentarily,to go on.
So that is what I will do,as I write to you.Iwill think of the things that made our life togetherthe charmed experience it was.I will remember youwith love.





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