Very fine, grayish, pleasant, but with that cold East Wind!

Down at 9. The garden & the Peacox. ― Breakfast, with Archer, who is a delightful boy. Kind clear Mrs. Clive also came, & Mildmay & Sybella, & darling little Kathleen ― who says she will go to Timbuc with me in 20 years, “if she is not ill.” She is certainly [A.1.] as an interesting child. At 10 ― Archer & 2 Dogs ― Self, & much luggage were in the break ― & I left Perrystone & its dear good mistress, whose sympathy has done me much good. The place is wholly shut in within itself ― unobtrusive & homeish: all the scenery rich & lovely: & I hope they will stay there now, always.

― Drive ― shakily, ― & I very unwell, ― to Ross: ― Archer, a gentle good clever lad ― saw me off. ―― Gloucester at 11… & some 3 odd minutes after the Bristol Train had gone. ( I had resolved to postpone Bath till Monday ― & to go to Torquay: a half-mad scheme ― but I cling to any promise of calm ― or weariness.) ― Waited till 1& came to Bristol by 2.30. At 3 went on by well known Highbridge, & Taunton, to Exeter, by 5.30. Wait again an hour. My “corpo”1 troubles me ― but I am not alarmed now as I should have been a month ago, simply because it seems to me that ˇ[now] all care or joy or grief are folly. ― Set off at 6.25 ― & so, by the Ex, & Dantish, & Teignmouth ― where I was in 1851 ― just 10 years ago ― to Newton Junction & thence, to Torquay by 8. Omnibus to Royal Hotel. Supper at 9. ― Weary absurd life! ―― καὶ τὶ νὰ κάμω; Ἀκόμη δὲν ἀποθνήσκω, ― άλλὰ ἳσως πρέπει νὰ ἀποθνήσκω, διὰ ὀλίγον καφίν.2

The Clives kindnesses dwell in my memory: ― so does the year 1857, & my sister at Lydford, & my walks hereabout.

Sogno di vita!3

[Transcribed by Marco Graziosi from Houghton Library, Harvard University, MS Eng. 797.3.]

  1. Body. []
  2. “And what am I to do? I am not dead yet ― but maybe I should die, for some coffe.” Nina Bouri notes that Lear might have intended the last word to be κέφι, which means “good cheer.” []
  3. What dream of life! []