Original Letter

                                                            France,

                                                                  6th April, 1918

 

My Own Dearest:–

I wonder if you can read my efforts in writing with a lead pencil? They look difficult enough to read just as they are written and I imagine that after being buffeted around in a mail sack for a week or ten days they must be skockeen. But when I can find ink there is no pen and when I have located a pen the ink is gone and a pencil is always available. If you have any troub. reading them let me know and I’ll write with pen and ink if I have to cheat.

I got two letters hier soir the 24th and 29th the night before I got the 26th and 28th. They help a lot and I am all squared away again. And, Dear, you must not worry a bit about me if you could only see me here you would laugh at any fears you had entertained why if Fritz put the snout of his 75 mile destroyer up against the top of this place and fired the shell would stop before it got within a mile of us. He could throw Krupps entire plant on top and we would never know it. So you mustn’t worry, Dearest, its wasted effort. Its great of you to do it and I shall always remember with thrills that you did but you needn’t. I am not in the slightest danger and don’t expect to be.

Turk and Jimmie Graham joined last night. Turk had his fourteen days in Paris but Jimmie had only five as they were all sent back on the 17th. They have been at one of the Bases ever since and have not enjoyed the experience a bit. In spite of his struggles getting back Turkey looks as if his holiday had done him a world of good. He has a poor opinion of the 75 miler and says that for a shell that is popularly supposed to travel so far it makes a very small explosion and does very little damage. Personally I think that it is some kind of a hoax.

There must be some kind of a house party at Carentonne with all the jolly Batchelors on the job. 900 francs seems plenty to pay from Chantilly to Bernay. Perhaps they had all their kale in 900 franc notes. I don’t think that there is a ghost of a chance of Fritz ever seeing Chantilly again but of course the cursed avions cannot be held back by wire or hand grenade. Dad burn them.!

Land & Water came last night and is full of pep and optimism. He’s on his last legs and this is his final effort. This is encouraging and I for one believe it implicitly. But only time can prove whether he is right or not. Although the fact that we are at war is always before me and despite the fact that I am so far down in the bowels of the earth my martial ardour is still uncooled. Yet the first thought I have in the morning – and it lasts until I go to sleep – is of you. Dearest, so far as my thoughts are concerned I am only aware of the war as a thing that keep[s] us apart. I think of you always and want you. I don’t think that anyone ever wanted anyone so much as I want you. Surely we shall not be apart very much longer. If wishes and longings were pacifists there wouldn’t be a single soldier left in the world. Turk says that in Paris they expect the war will be over in a month! Its a big hope but God knows I hope it is true.

Last night I jotted down some things I had been laughing at. They aren’t very funny at that but I am submitting them.

Dearest, I love you to-day and the wave that engulfed Galveston wouldn’t wash that out. I just want to take you by the hand and go away with you to some place where we will be together – just ourselves – to live and love forever, away from all this crowd who quarrel and fight. Could you come, Dear?

                                                            Your own

                                                                  Ross

Photographs

Bernay: