Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Letter from Hettie | № 5

See the other letters from Hettie here: No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, No. 4


Dearest, Darling Caroline,

Please forgive me for not writing sooner, but we have had a very harrowing time. We were exploring the ruins of an old castle, when Uncle Jasper fell through some old brickwork and broke his collarbone and left shoulder. Oh, it was horrible Caroline! We thought he was dead, it was that serious. A very nice family took us in and has helped nurse him back to health. He had a very high fever on Nov. 1 and 2, and we did nothing but pray and pray.

 It seemed that the presence of Death itself was in the room, but the fever broke during the night of the 2nd. Thank the Lord! Uncle is still in a lot of pain, but he is being a real trooper and tells us to go see the sights and not worry about him. It is so beautiful and green here, and the family has a very kind son who has offered to escort us to the local attractions, but I feel tremendously, quietly leaving my dear uncle’s side!

So we shall be here in Ireland till Uncle Jasper is not in so much pain, and then we will miss seeing Scotland, but will flee to sunny Italy and Greece, and perhaps the South of France, so Uncle can be sure to be warm while fully recovering.

It will be strange to celebrate Thanksgiving in a country where it is unheard of, but we shall indeed be thankful just to be together and to have been spared what could have been an awful occurrence.  Much love and blessings to you and your little brood this Thanksgiving, I hope you are starting to feel a little better now.


Cousin Hettie

Liberty’s Tears

Liberty’s Tears

I saw fair Lady Liberty a-bowing of her head.
As silent tears fell to the ground, I listened while she said,
“I fear my life is fading for I feel so very frail.
My cheeks, which once bloomed pink with hope,
Now sullied are, and pale.

Men have trampled down poor Virtue, and Vice reigns in her stead.
And Justice, weak from her long fight, ere long shall too be dead.
“Weep not, Fair Lady!” I cried out, “And bow thy head no more!
For still God-fearing men there be upon this hallowed shore.”

“God-fearing men!  Where have you been, when you were needed so?”
The lady’s vehement retort struck me a mighty blow.
“Where were you when the vilest men abused my sacred name
To give themselves a “right” to kill their own sweet unborn kin?

Why did you let them take our Lord from children’s daily fare
That they might rise up in the world with spirits stripped and bare?
Oh, where have you been, blind Godly men?” and once more she did weep.
Now weeping, too, I answered her, “Lady, we’ve been asleep.

And blind indeed we have been too, to Evil’s ugly face.
We looked the other way while war was waged upon our race.”

— Marqueta Graham


Monday, March 23, 2015

Poem for a New Musician

Poem for a New Musician

Make your music, my child!
Try the old piano out and see
What magic it can do.
See how each key, whether black or white
Has its own perfect place.
Feel the coolness of ebony and ivory.
Hear the notes; soft when you lightly touch,
Loud when you pound.
Now go and play the tune that has been hidden
Away in the heart of you. 

M. J. Graham
~19 February, 2015

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hettie Visits the Lake District

20 October, 1911
Dearest Caroline,

Oh, I have ever so much to tell you about the Lake District! It is so green and so beautiful, I could stay here forever.

I sketched William Wordsworth's home for you. We drove past the spot where he wrote "Daffodils," and I wished we could have come in the spring, for our guide told us they still bloom there (the daffodils).

John Ruskin's home was amazing, too, and we even had a peek inside. There are many ruins and old villages with cobbled streets, and of course the lakes are simply Heaven on Earth. The colours are just starting to change to reds, oranges, and yellows. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! I wish I could bottle the scent and sent it to you. This leaf will have to do.

I hope that you have had a wonderful week. Send everyone my love.

Your cousin,


Monday, October 8, 2012

Hettie's Autumn Letter

8 October, 1911

Dearest Caroline,

We are still in the Lake District, enjoying it very much. London was cold and foggy, but we braved the weather and watched the changing of the guards on Tuesday; it was quite a sight!

Uncle Jasper has developed the photographs from our sea voyage, and I am including one of Cousin Paul and me (this was right after I lost my camera in the brink). There are so many photos of everyone but Uncle Jasper, that we'll have to tie him down to get some of him, as well.

I hope that you are enjoying beautiful autumn in the mountains there. I imagine that most of your colours are gone by now? We are enjoying lovely weather today, sunny and balmy.



Saturday, September 29, 2012

Hettie Arrives in England

25 September, 1911

Dear Caroline,

We made it safe and sound yesterday, even though we had a big storm all night the first night.

Here's a picture of the hotel where we are staying; it's so elegant inside, with big crystal chandeliers and velvet carpets.

We're going to London today, and then touring the Lake District. Do you think we'll see Mr. and Mrs. Darcey, or Peter Rabbit there? I've been filling a sketchbook with little drawings, since my camera was lost at sea.

Till next time,

Your loving cousin,


Friday, September 14, 2012

Cousin Hettie Takes a Grand Tour

Cousin Hettie is a character I made up to help a friend pass away the miserable months of morning sickness. I sent her a series of letters "written" by Cousin Hettie, who was just embarking on a real, live Grand Tour of Europe, along with little mementos of sites seen along the way.

This is letter #1, which was written on this postcard of the Statue of Liberty~

New York City
14 Sep, 1911
 Dearest Caroline,

Well, here I am, cousin, embarking on a real-live Grand Tour! I never dreamed it would be possible, and I daresay I would not have been brave enough to go if not for going with Paul, Aunt Elspeth, and Uncle Jasper. They are the dearest people in the world! How shall I ever make it up to them?

New York City is ever so crowded and noisy, and not to mention dirty! We toured the Statue of Liberty yesterday, which was a grand adventure of its own!

Tomorrow we shall board the steamer Wimbleton, and they say it will take five days to reach Liverpool, weather permitting.

Oh, I do wish you could come, too, dear cousin of mine! But of course, in your condition, a voyage on the sea would most likely feel like a trip to Hades, instead!

Do give my love to those little darlings of yours, and to that great big Man. Someday I hope to take the Grand Tour of Marriage, myself.

Your loving cousin,