Letter from Harry Massey to Barbara Massey

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Letter written by Harry Massey from the No. 6 Palestine company at the Bluffs to Barbara Massey.

This is a scanned version of the original image in Special Collections and Archives at Middlebury College, Middlebury, Vt.



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Letter No. 12. Friday - 15 May 42. Major J. H. Massey 6, Palestinian Corp, The [Buffs ?] [?] My own darling Barbara - This is an awful life, & I do miss you so much, my darling. That is not a very cheerful beginning to a letter, but I feel less & less cheerful these days. There is so little tangible sign of an end to the war, & this being away from you is so unbearable & painful & tragic. And yes, the times seems to pass, too rapidly, [in about ?] 1/2 months I shall have been away from you for two years - & in less than that the war will enter its 4th year. Never did I dream of such a thing happening to you & I. Last year, I used to write to you, I remember, & rather glibby, about the law of compensation, & how all would be repaid to us in added happiness & joy. I still believe very firmly in that. But I just feel now that I do not want or need any compensing - I only want to come home to be with you now. It has gone on for long enough. You know how I take things pretty seriously - well - at the moment, & for some time now, I am taking the war seriously. And I am always feeling furious & frustrated because I do not think that other people do. I don't much like complacency at any time - & at the moment I cannot bear it, because it is keeping you & I apart longer than necessary. Anyway, I have thrown a few guantlets down during the last few days, & I am now awaiting results. I cannot possibly tell you anything about it, unfortunately - but they amount to personal attacks, & so the dust should rise. Another point of interest is that I am going up to

Last edit about 1 year ago by shashathree
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Jerusalem tomorrow to have lunch with the Samuels. This has been brewing for 2-3 weeks, & I am to meet a Colonel who is 2 i/c to the G.O.C. Palestine. I have a feeling that there is something behind all this, & that the lunch is not entirely social - even though I am told by [Burskein ?] that the Hon Mrs likes me so much - & the plot thickened by the fact that Helen Pine, the A.T.S. headmistress, is coming too. Perhaps I shall be wiser by this time tomorrow to be able to tell you more. But coming on top of my lunch with [ ?], it is all rather strange. I went up to Haifa on Wednesday, with [Den ?], to watch a recruiting march, in which 70 of my boys were taking part. So I went & had lunch with the Hopkins, and I enjoyed seeing them again. Poor Jack has been pretty ill - 5 weeks in hospital, & now 6 weeks sick leave. He was x-rayed & they found one lung as flat as a pancake & of course suspected T.B. - but it was not, & he seems to be coming on well now. Nina was blooming, & is still teaching art, according to the Royal College, to the young of Haifa - & Sheila was quite sweet after a shy beginning. It seems there has been talk of having an army major, or liaison officer with the Navy - & that my name came up in the discussion about it. That really would be rather an interesting job, and I told Jack that my present engagement was due to end on Aug 1st. I shall write & say thank you

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for my lunch - & remind Jack about it again. I must go to bed, darling one - it is 11.0 & I have worked v. hard today, & feel pretty sleepy. XXX H. Tuesday - May 19th. Oh, darling one - I began this letter in an unhappy & complaining mood, the following day I received your no 89, which was very unhappy & complaining, & told me you had been having a lot of tears. My poor darling sweetheart, how I hate to hear this, & how annoyed & hurt I am that you still have to suffer & after so long. And you had just had 5 letters from me - I'm afraid that they must have been rather miserable ones, & have done nothing at all to cheer you up; two of them, I know, were largely about the Gergel affair. But that was very much on my mind, & so I had to write about it, had I not? I'm afraid that neither of us is guaranteed to [burden ?] the other by our letters, except in our expressions of love & [ ?], but what alternative is there. I want to know exactly what you are doing & thinking & feeling, & I believe you do about me. And it seems to have offended you a little by saying that I hoped you would lead a contented life at the Tibbles - & this letter of mine only arrived when you were leaving them because you could not bear them a minute longer. You said that you really understood that, [we saw ?] tolerable. Of course I did, darling - but I did hope that you would achieve a certain degree of contentment too - & I still do, now that you are with Juliette. I mean a certain system of life - & I know that is what you have been aiming for - whereby each day is more or less filled, & you have a few intelligent people

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to talk to when you want to - & time enough for Marie - & time enough to write to me & to do some reading - & not too much housework - & the possibility to go out & see a film, or up to London, & the knowledge that Ma is safe & in good hands while you are away. I had no idea that the Tibbles would be like it has been, & your first letters announcing your intention of going there & your arrival there, gave me no suspicions but that the arrangement would be adequate. And so I do hope, darling, that at Juliette's, you will achieve this system & degree of contentment. It cannot be very complete or continuous, I know - the way we love & miss each other prevents that, & so does the unhappiness of the last 2 1/2 years. And all the bad news which is always coming through - & our maddlings & mistakes - all of which make it so that we cannot look forward to any definite date when we shall be together again. And you say you are getting rather desperate for me - and oh darling, I for you, too. It is a mental & physical ache which is with me all the time. I am so tired of talking to people who I don't care a damn about - generally they are fools & not worth talking to at all - & even when they are not, I have no interest or sympathy in them. I yearn to talk with you, about serious things, & little things, & about love. And my body & my senses ache for you too - I want to sleep in one bed with you again, & hold your hand, & kiss you sometimes passionately, other times lovingly, & just little kisses too - to be able to stroke your

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hair & head, & just touch, lightly, & feel your dress & this reassuring sensation of you underneath, & also just to see & feel you near me - & to stroke your legs & give your flesh a squeeze. And always to feel that you respond & like to have me near you & touching you - & the feeling that tonight, or soon, as even now, our bodies are feeling each others, & we shall have glorious passion. And when we do it is so glorious & makes us so happy & content & healthy- & makes us want to do it again too. Apart from your very permissible moaning, your letter was also very sweet & interesting - so don't go apologizing to me, even for the moany part. You can & must say whatever you want to me. You told me again how completely you believed in my love & faithfulness, & you reassured me about yours for me. You even said that if I were to be tempted & fall, you would understand that it was because I was unhappy & lonely without you, & you would not allow it to spoil anything. Darling, you must not even say or think that, even though I do thank for saying that you would not give me up or throw me away so lightly, or even allow such a thing to spoil our love for each other. But I hope you do not really think it to be possible, because if you do, & you are even half as jealously & possessively in love with me as I am with you, you will feel worried & unhappy about it. And whereas it would not actually spoil anything, I do think it would indicate that my love for you is not quite the complete & wonderful & heaven sent thing which I like to think it to be - & from

Last edit 21 days ago by jaxdnaquest
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