[Letterhead: Goupil Paris]
Paris, 10 Dec. 1875
My dear Theo,
Herewith what I promised. You’ll like the book by Jules Breton
. There’s one poem of his that I found especially moving: ‘Illusions’.1
Blessed are those whose hearts are thus attuned.
All things work together for good to them that love God2
is a beautiful saying. It will be so for you, too; and the aftertaste of these difficult days will be good.
But write and tell me soon how things are and when the doctor says you’ll be better, if you haven’t done so already, that is.
In a fortnight I hope to be in Etten, you can imagine how much I’m looking forward to it.
Have I already told you that I’ve taken up pipe-smoking &c. again? I’ve rediscovered in my pipe an old, trusty friend, and I imagine we’ll never part again.
Tell everyone at the Rooses
’ especially that I bid them good-day; you and I have had a lot of good times in their house, and have met with much loyalty.
We have ‘Sunday morning’ by Emile Breton
here at present.3
You know it, don’t you? It’s a village street with farmhouses and sheds, and at the end the church surrounded by poplars. Everything covered with snow and little black figures going to church. It tells us that winter is cold but that there are warm human hearts.
I wish you the very best, old boy, and believe me ever
Your loving brother
The packages of chocolate marked X are for you, the other two are for Mrs Roos
. Smoke the cigarettes with your housemates. Adieu.