Mary and Anna [Muir]
 [in margin: I read a scotch paper]  Indp'l's Feb 11th
Dear sisters Mary & Anna
I believe that of all my cor- respondents - you & Joanna are the only ones that give me more letters than I return. I read books & gather flowers & work with & think with so much machinery that I have only a little time to write even to my own dear sisters. I am sorry Mary that your letter together with your photograph was lost. I guess that the Mr John Muir who lives here had opened it, and when he found so good a scotch face with his own good name of Muir, he said, 'Stay with me sweet lass' You will go [illegible] farther, but you must send another Mary & I will send mine soon as I can sit still long enough
to have it taken. I do not know Mary that I was ever celebrated in song before, but everybody has heard of "Highland Mary". I used to write rhyming letter but now that I am becoming practical my metre would [illegible] like this "Mary pary rix tix tary" I believe it is natural for all to speak in verse some time or other in life. You remember that earn our pladding, pract- ical, [illegible], Dave used to write love & soft sentiment, in gentle song when enjoyed in stable duties or "cutting grub or when enjoyed in [illegible] shrewed & [illegible] house & [illegible] trades with father, - But all fun aside I really think that for people who are not born [illegible] to spend much time in making verse is unwise - , still some good results from it for people thus
[in margin: Mary you must excuse me for not sending you rhyme for rhyme. Yours is firstrate.]
learn the use and scope of words and also acquire a habit of steady continued thought. You will find that now is the golden time for gathering stores of knowledge. it is improb- able that at any other time of life you will have equal opportunities, make yourselves acquainted with all the leading facts in the worlds history & do by all means begin & personeringly pursue the study of natural science, especially of botany. Your range of pleas- ure will then grow wide & most [illegible] everyday, and a [illegible] & intelligent love for the Creator will become more & more in- tense ------------------------------ Do not fret, Anna about spend- ing a prof[illegible] life, have patience and do not fear that the
[in margin: [life?]. Joanna I will send you a word or two some day. My [fondest?] love to all who [illegible] home. [illegible] John]
future will not be rich in satis- faction and grant you ample scope for activity, & usefulness. You are now remote from the j[illegible] & fever & wickedness of the world where Nature has spread a table of beauty sufficient to ravish the eyes of angles. You little know the depth & intensity of that beauty & grandeur that is coming to all the undisturbed hills & meadows of your home. In all of my wide journeys I have never seen a place or section of country so rich in sweet wild flowers wealth as your own. Mary you say in your poetry how great a blessing is [illegible] & [illegible] but dear we it might be greater for here is the bottom our sheet now that we have just begun to speak & I have scarce [illegible] left to wish comfort & all good things
Muir, John, "Letter from John Muir to Mary and Anna Muir, 1867 Feb 11" (1867). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 1215.
Reel 01, Image 0928
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