To THOMAS FORBES KELSALL
[Postmark] Mr 10 1847
MY DEAR KELSALL,–I have been detained since you had the kindness to answer a letter of mine (Aug 13.) much to my distaste in this extraordinary part of the world: and am now staying in one of the most abominable places this side of Tartarus, till it shall please the apple blossom to appear. I meditate still an incursion on your privacy before I leave the Britannic shores, of which I will apprize you some days in advance.
It will give me very great pleasure to confer with you, but pray expect no addition to your experience from the scenes of my existence; nothing can be more monotonous, dull and obscure: the needy knife grinder’s adventures would have been oriental marvels and pantomimic mysteries in comparison. Prose of the leadenest drab dye has ever pursued your humble servant. But of that you will not doubt,–I believe I might have met with some success as a retailer of small coal, or a writer of long-bottomed tracts, but doubt of my aptitude for any higher literary or commercial occupation. But you will see–I believe I have all the dulness, if not the other qualities–of your British respectability.
You have been always good enough to overrate any bit of verse &c I scribbled, so that I was almost tempted to send you something to go thro’ at leisure,–or treat like any other drug, I might be unfortunate enough to prescribe–per post, as postage is cheap; but I find that I have lost or left behind nearly all the very little that I have committed to paper in English since last I communicated with you: and what I have is either utterly illegible, or mere refacciamenti of the unhappy Jest book, so that I am compelled to spare you.
I hope to see you well, and as happy as a man ought to be; and to make pleasant new acquaintance among the to me unknown new generation of Kelsalls: and may they flutter and sing in those sunny places of the green wood of life from which our shadows have passed away.
Pray say whether it will be still convenient to you to see, in 3 weeks or a month for a hour or a day,
THOMAS KELSALL Esqre