“In the midst of my egoism, I yet could not bear to come like a death-shadow across the feast of your joy. I could not bear to forsake the world in which you still lived and might need me; it was part of the faith I had vowed to you,—to wait and endure. Maggie, that is a proof of what I write now to assure you of,—that no anguish I have had to bear on your account has been too heavy a price to pay for the new life into which I have entered in loving you.
I want you to put aside all grief because of the grief you have caused me. I was nurtured in the sense of privation; I never expected happiness; and in knowing you, in loving you, I have had, and still have, what reconciles me to life.”