standing silently together each day at sunset

(e-mail from Fred on 12 Aug 2001, part of a large collection Patrick sent to me in Aug 2015)

Subject: greetings

Dear Stephanie & Pat,

Full of music, good food (no small admission from one who lives in Firenze), dance, incredible landscapes, some new friends, & best of all, affection. I have printed them out as shared them — the best of his eccentric prose. & I received yr gorgeous card. I now have an impression of yr inviting & interesting (horrible word — should be dropped from critical vocabulary) house. I learn that both of you became stone masons over the yrs to achieve ‘your place’.

& learn anew, Stephanie, that you are extraordinary & dear. However, he did not mention that you sang for him.

I think that you 2 should form the habit of holding hands & standing silently together each day at sunset for 30 seconds of total ‘realization’ of the graceful life you have made together. Bless you.

Wished heart-deep to be with you

But, Pat, dismayed to learn that you have started smoking again. Quit if you can — before you’re in the mess I am in. O how I long to h8it a tennis ball again — but pant when I climb the stairs. Not to mention close acquaintance with my own mortality. Am hopeful for the next assessment. But I know, always a trade-off. Ah, the enormous pleasure of the needles of caffeine & nicotine as you ready yrself for the day — maybe with Mozart in the background. A close choice & both have a price.

Pat, questions.

Marin Marais, the French early 18th cent. viole master. I have recording of several of his suites. Heard his ‘Sonnierie de Ste. Genevieve’ on radio & ordered a CD which turned out to be ‘arranged’. Do you happen to know how it was originally scored — was it just viole & continuo — as I remembered the radio broadcast.

And, remember a while ago I asked about the spelling of the stonemason’s name Andreu. Is my memory accurate? Maybe because of French basque immigration?

And, an art photographer has cleaned up & printed ‘Sad Donkey’ in suitable condition for framing. I’m delighted. Would you repeat the inscription on the back of it & spell the artist’s name. Is it an etching or line drawing?

Naught else now. Still hell hot, ozone orange. & West Virginia ravaged by floods. But nothing deters the Carolina Wren — or the peaches & tomatoes. Or the affection I send, f