Page:Lettres d'un innocent; the letters of Captain Dreyfus to his wife ; (IA lettresduninnoce00drey).pdf/152

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  • gether in our chimney corner. And, then, these are the

only moments when I say a word, and if I were to listen only to my desire, I should talk so with you every day, and every hour in the day—but I should always say the same words.

If at times I groan, it is that being such as you know me to be—and you know that I am neither patient nor resigned—the anguish is too great, the hours weigh too heavy on my soul. I do not pretend to be stronger than I am. If I do succeed in holding out I have told you why. I do not want to return to it. But if I am reduced to mere groaning, if I must stand with folded arms before the most appalling sorrow that the honest and ardent heart of a soldier can feel when he is struck not only in himself, but in his wife, his children, in those he loves, I say to you yourself, as I say to you all, "Courage, individual energy!" When a man is subjected to a misfortune so undeserved he conquers it; and he does not conquer it by tears, or by recriminations, but by going straight forward. Our goal is our honor, and we should press forward with active, indefatigable energy, an energy that should be as great as the circumstances that exact our effort.

After all, there is a justice in this world, and it is not possible that the innocent should remain subjected to such martyrdom. Yes, I am repeating myself, and I can do nothing but repeat myself. My opinions have not changed. All this is rather that I may chat a little with you than for any other reason; to pass with you an hour of our long nights, for, as I have told you, I am now awaiting the result of your efforts and of the steps you have taken, which I think will not now be long delayed; and I am hoping that I shall soon see the day