14 August 1948

14 August 1948

Darling Cyclone,

If you should feel a warm, sweet, all enveloping blanket of content, fall over you some evening about 6:30 p.m., you’ll know that my thoughts of you are reaching all the way up there and tugging at your heart saying, “Hey Cyclone, be of good cheer, I’m way down here but I think of you more than you ever hope, and I love you with a love that is an ever-increasing, not to be denied, flame!”

I think of you often during the day, every day, but when the end of twilight comes and Jupiter creeps into the golden moon glow, you are beside me, I can feel you, I know you are there, and my heart sings.

In fact one night, when the helmsman made seven bells, and the lookout answered bell for bell and sang out, “All’s clear, calm night, lights are bright sir!”, my heart sang so strongly for joy of our mutual, beautiful love, that I made up a song on the wing of the bridge, while watching the birth of an evening.  I’ll sing it to you some time, if you can stand it.

Cyclone My Cyclone

I love you so-I guess you know,

How I stumble through each day,

Whenever I’m away.

But when evening rolls around,

And lays its curtain down,

I dream a dream,

A Technicolor dream,

A dream about,

Cyclone-My Cyclone,

I’m living for the day,

I come ashore to stay,

Then I’ll never take

My arms away-from,

Cyclone-My-Cyclone! 

Oh well, at least you know I love you and that you are in most of my thoughts in some way each day.  You asked me to pray for you darling!  Remember.  Well, except for the mornings when we have been docking ship or something, I’ve been to Mass and Communion every day, both in Thanksgiving, for you, to God, and as a love gift to my cyclone.

I pray especially hard at that part of the Mass where the Priest takes the paten, makes the Sign of the Cross on himself and says, “Grant of thy goodness, peace in our days, that aided by the riches of thy mercy, we may be always free from sin and safe from all disquiet”.

Gosh!  I’ve missed your letters since you lost my addresses.  When you get the next list, write them on the wall of your bedroom, you can’t lose that.

Speaking of your bedroom, I still recall fondly, the luscious nights’ sleep I had in your bed, with my head on your pillow, your perfume around me and a Technicolor dream inside me.

About 259 more days my darling cyclone, and you’ll be mine forever.

Goodnight my life,

I love you, my wife,

Forever,

Dave

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Renaissance Man

 

Port of Spain, Trinidad, B.W.I. October 22, 1947

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David W. Shields

Dearest Betty,

Came across the following while perusing a book of early essayists:

Her divine skill taught me this;
That from everything I saw
I could some instruction draw,
And raise pleasure to the height
From the meanest object’s sight.
By the murmur of a spring,
Or the least bough’s reselling;
By a daisy, whose leaves spread
Shut when Titan goes to bed;
Or a shady bush or tree;
She could more infuse in me,
Than all nature’s beauties can
In some other wiser man.

That’s all! Doesn’t it seem a little strange to you that I should enjoy poetry as I do? Maybe it’s because I work with the sun, stars, and planets and wagering my wits with the counter currents of the sea. Anyway, I enjoy reading good poetry.

Honey, I appreciate the fact that you would like to know when I’ll hit the states, in order to arrange your time etc.. But, nothing will be definite until written sailing orders come aboard, and we are actually loading for the states.

The New York office has been flooded with phone calls about the “Hawser Eye”. Enough of those, “when will my Johnny be home’s”, and we may go back sooner than I think.

I shall send you a wire just as soon as I find out for sure when we will leave for “Home”. When you will still have time to talking “Fluffy” into giving you your vacation when I am there to share it with you.

Maybe we can go skiing together, for a day anyway. I’d like to stop in at the old “Arlberg Inn” for a weekend though. Just to be once more in the spot where it all started.

The best estimate, it’s only a guess, mind you, of our voyage from here is as follows:

Port of Spain to the jungle
Jungle to Port of Spain
Port of Spain to jungle
Jungle to port of Spain
Port of Spain to jungle
Jungle to Georgetown, British Giana
Georgetown to Port of Spain
Port of Spain to Dominica
Dominica to St. Thomas
St. Thomas to New York City (arriving last week in Nov. or first week in Dec.)

You see darling, we can’t seem to get any information out of the “Alco” office down here about when we are leaving. Guesses run wild! You never really know until the written orders are on board.

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There is still a chance that I may get home in time for that dance you mentioned. It will be wonderful to go out with Tom and Gwen again! And, oh Lady! would I love to see you in an evening gown again! With that corsage stowed in the usual place!

We have had wonderful times together my love. When you remember them, also remember that it is only the beginning. We have scarcely begun to enjoy each other.

Do I want to drive down to 3rd Cliff when I get home?

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Third Cliff. Scituate, MA

Honey, that’s almost like saying, “Do I want to hold you in my arms again!” You know the answer to that. Third Cliff has been intricately and inseparably into every year of my life. All the years I was at sea, I returned, if only in thought, to the treasured, longed for beauty of Third Cliff in summer.

Now, I love it more than ever, because, as long as I live, when I think of Third Cliff, you will be beside me.

Yes, we will go to Third Cliff!

My darling, love me a little, have patience with me, for I’m not long from your arms. When your read this, the days shall be even less than now.

There will not be the slightest flaw in my work when we aim the bow north, and I navigate “home” to you. The Gulf Stream is strong this time of year, and I shall have a fair current all the way “home” to my darling Betty.

God Bless You and keep you for,

Your Dave