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“ [365] . . . Worked a good deal on my poem. At least thought and thought much, and altered a little.”

This was the poem which prefaces this chapter and which was written for the forthcoming Unitarian Convention in Boston. She had been at work on it for some time, first “trying to try for it,” and later “hammering” and polishing with great care. “It came to me like a flash,” she says, “but had to be much thought over and corrected.” And again, “It was given to me something as was my ‘Battle Hymn.’ . . .”

October 25. Wrote to a very bumptious child, thirteen years old, who proffers me her friendship and correspondence, claiming to have written poems and magazine contributions praised by ‘noted authors.’ I sent her back her letter, with three or four corrections and a little advice, kindly meant, but which may not be so taken... She will probably turn and rend me, but I really felt it might do her good.”

November 14. Gardiner. A good meditation. The sense of God in the universe seems to be an attribute of normal humanity. We cannot think of our own personal identity without at the same time imagining a greater self from which we derive. This idea may be crude and barbarous, great minds have done much to make it otherwise; Christ most of all with His doctrine of divine love, providence, and forgiveness. The idea of a life beyond this one seems also to appertain to normal humanity. We had best accept this great endowment which philosophy seeks to analyze much as a boy will take a watch to pieces, but cannot put it together again so that it will work.”

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