My dear brother
After a last discussion with Mr Peyron I obtained permission to pack my trunk, which I’ve sent by goods train. The 30 kilos of luggage one is allowed to take will allow me to take a few frames, easel and some stretching frames &c.
I’ll leave as soon as you’ve written to Mr Peyron, I feel calm enough, and I don’t think that a mental upset could easily happen to me in the state I’m in.
In any event, I hope to be in Paris before Sunday to spend the day, which you will have off, quietly with all of you. I really hope to see André Bonger too at the first opportunity.1
I’ve also just finished a canvas of pink roses against yellow-green background in a green vase.2  1v:2
I hope that the canvases of the last few days will compensate us for the expenses of travel.
This morning, as I’d been to have my trunk stamped, I saw the countryside again – very fresh after the rain and covered in flowers – how many more things I would have done.
I’ve also written to Arles for them to send the two beds and the bed linen by goods train.3 I estimate that this can only cost a good ten francs in transport charges, and it’s still something gained from the debacle. For it’ll certainly be useful to me in the country.
If you haven’t yet replied to Mr Peyron’s letter, please send him a telegram, in such a way that I may make the journey on Friday or Saturday at the latest to spend Sunday with  1v:3 you. In doing so I’ll also lose the least time for my work, which is finished here for the moment.
In Paris, if I feel up to it, I’d immediately very much like to do a painting of a yellow bookshop (gas effect),4 which I’ve had in my mind for so long. You’ll see that I’ll be at work right from the day after my arrival. I tell you, as regards work, my mind feels absolutely serene and the brushstrokes come to me and follow each other very logically.
Anyway until Sunday AT THE LATEST, I shake your hand firmly in the meantime, warm regards to Jo.

Ever yours,

Probably the answer to Mr Peyron will already have left, which I hope. I was a little vexed that there were a few days’ delay, because that seems to me to be of no use for anything. For either  1r:4 I’d plunge into new works here, or it’s now that I have the leisure for the journey. Spending days doing nothing, here or elsewhere, that’s what would make me miserable in my current state of mind. Besides, Mr P. isn’t opposed to it, but naturally when you leave, your position is a little difficult with the rest of the administration. But it’s going well, and we’ll part amicably.5
 2r:5  2v:6


Br. 1990: 873 | CL: 634
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, Tuesday, 13 May 1890

1. Van Gogh was officially released from the asylum on Friday, 16 May 1890; see Documentation, 8 May 1889. He left the same day for Paris, where he arrived on Saturday, 17 May (FR b2012). After staying with Theo and Jo for three days, he travelled to Auvers. He saw Bonger on 18 May; see letter 879, n. 16. Jo van Gogh-Bonger wrote the following about her first meeting with Vincent: ‘I had expected a sick person, but here was a sturdy, broad-shouldered man, with a healthy colour, a smile on his face, and a very resolute appearance ... “He seems perfectly well; he looks much stronger than Theo”, was my first thought ... He stayed with us three days and was lively and cheerful all the time.’ See Brieven 1914, pp. lx-lxi, and Hulsker 1990-1, pp. 414-415. On Saturday, 17 May 1890, she recorded in her Household book .30 centimes for flowers – on the 18th she bought beer and wine (FR b2211, Household book of Mrs Theodorus van Gogh-Bonger, April 1889 - September 1891).
2. Roses in a vase (F 682 / JH 1979 [2906]).
3. This was letter 871 to Ginoux.
4. In letter 823 Van Gogh had written about his idea to paint a bookshop lit by gaslight. His plan never came to fruition, however.
5. Peyron wrote the following on Van Gogh’s certificate of release: ‘Ce malade calme la pluspart du temps a eu pendant son séjour dans la maison plusieurs accès qui ont présenté une durée de quinze jours à un mois, pendant ces accès le malade est en proie à des terreurs terrifiantes, et il a essayé à diverses reprises de s’empoisonner soit en avalant de la couleur dont il se servait pour la peinture, soit en absorbant de l’essence de pétrole qu’il avait soustraite au garçon au moment où il garnissait ses lampes.
Le dernier accès qu’il a eu s’est déclaré après un voyage qu’il fit à Arles et il a duré environ deux mois. Dans l’intervalle des accès la malade est parfaitement tranquille et lucide, il se livre alors avec ardeur à la peinture.
Aujourd’hui il demande sa sortie pour aller habiter le Nord de la France, espérant que ce climat lui sera plus favorable.’ See Documentation, 8 May 1889. A photograph of the original page in the register of the asylum was published in exhib. cat. New York 1986, p. 73.