Letter from Florence Henniker to Thomas Hardy, 11 July 1914

[Page 1]

The Little Orchard



My dear friend:

I am so afraid I did not say – or did I? how much I liked that pathetic little poem wh. you so kindly sent. I am afraid it is true of so many most times beside the summer – that one does not know how great the [their] happiness is that they give us, until the [Page 2] autumn comes!

I feel that your life now must be very serene & happy with such a sympathetic understanding companion as Florence.

I hope you don't find this quite unusual heat very trying? It is excessively [Page 3] hot here to-day. & there was such a curious brief hurricane just now. The leaves & dust & blossoms – I think, had exactly the effect of a heavy shower ^of rain^ blown across towards the orchard.

Milner feels the heat very much, more of course than the short coated Wessex.

I wonder if the Irish question is interesting you [Page 4] much?

I am afraid all this political work is a terrible strain for my brother – He is very highly strung – & it must be most nerve-exhausting.

I hope you had a nice time with Lady St Helier – & no doubt you met pleasant & appreciative people.

The effect of the Shoreham air seems to be that the inhabitants become extraordin[ary] self-satisfied & self-absorbed!

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I can't say I care for my neighbours here! I hope I shall not become very smug and egotistical. However, I mean if I can to be more in London than I have been lately. With my best love to Florence.

[From] yr affec. friend

[Page 6]

Is your garden very dried up? I hope you have many dear birds in it.


[Page 7]

Thomas Hardy Esq O.M.



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