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E.B. White’s beautiful letter to his pregnant wife (from the dog)

Posted by / August 20, 2013

EB White

If you’re tearing up just thinking of Charlotte’s Web, well, you’re not alone.

Author E.B. White was quite the animal lover who also had a soft spot for his dear wife Katharine, to whom he was married for an impressive forty-eight years.

During her pregnancy with their only child, White “gave voice” to Katharine’s dog, Daisy, to express how he felt regarding this big event in their lives, a beautiful letter brought into the spotlight by Maria Popova at Brain Pickings.

(Oh, and if you happen to be pregnant, we highly recommend grabbing a hankie or two.)

Dear Mrs. White:

I like having Josephine here in the morning, although I suppose I will get less actual thinking done — as I used to do my thinking mornings in the bathroom. White has been stewing around for two days now, a little bit worried because he is not sure that he has made you realize how glad he is that there is to be what the column writer in the Mirror calls a blessed event. So I am taking this opportunity, Mrs. White, to help him out to the extent of writing you a brief note which I haven’t done in quite a long time but have been a little sick myself as you know. Well, the truth is White is beside himself and would have said more about it but is holding himself back, not wanting to appear ludicrous to a veteran mother. What he feels, he told me, is a strange queer tight little twitchy feeling around the inside of his throat whenever he thinks that something is happening which will require so much love and all on account of you being so wonderful. (I am not making myself clear I am afraid, but on the occasions when White has spoken privately with me about this he was in no condition to make himself clear either and I am just doing the best I can in my own way.) I know White so well that I always know what is the matter with him, and it always comes to the same thing — he gets thinking that nothing that he writes or says ever quite expresses his feeling, and he worries about his inarticulateness just the same as he does about his bowels, except it is worse, and it makes him either mad, or sick, or with a prickly sensation in the head…


Read the full letter at Brain Pickings.

Great writing.

Photo credit: White Literary LLC

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