Commentary

Disciples


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Sunday, July 7, 1889

     Coming from Philadelphia with Kemper,—between 5 and 6—near six—met W. at Third and Federal, he in his chair. We crossed the street: he saw and hailed us. We did not do much more at the time than shake hands with him, but he said to me, "on the fly" "I have a letter from Dowden—I will show it to you—it is not much—he has received the book all right: his letter is very warm—very enthusiastic." Then, making some comment on the beautiful day, we started off, and

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he was wheeled along in his chair towards the river. Later on, very near 8, after our tea, we went down to the house, but he had not yet returned. However, it was not long before he came up. Sat out of doors. Talked freely. The day had "seized" him he said, "powerfully" "this evening especially—and down by the river" but— "I wondered why so few were out sailing—there has been a good free breeze, and yet the yachts were few. I am sure that if I had my legs and a boat, it would be a day for me." And so to violate the Sabbath? He laughed— "No—I'd worship by it—worship with the elements—with the water, the sky, the shore." "Why," he said later on, "even the horse-cars will by and by run on Sundays: don't you believe it?"

     I had been out to Germantown. Brought him from Clifford "Amiel's Journal." He was much pleased. "I've been keeping a sharp eye out for it: it is evidently a curious, if not great, book. Amiel was a Swiss—wasn't he? Perhaps with a spice of the French introduced: his name seems French. We'll see, now—what we get from it!" He said there was "something in the air this day that" you could "taste and smell—a delicious something. I judge things not by taste along but by smell—woods, for instance," and he spoke of "the New York Exposition—they had there thousands of woods—woods of all description—woods in their natural state—not even polished: and oh! the odors they threw out were sweeter than words can tell!" He read the papers some today, and "some out of the books"—had in fact felt "a little on the mend" but not greatly—no strength coming, though some comfort. Talked some of Philadelphia affairs. "I understand the Traction cars—the cable cars—come right down to the ferry now"—such matters.


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