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Three Lives in World War 2

Appendix 2

Two Letters from England to Joan

6th August 1941 On Duty on Sunday . Will return money on Thursday Thanks for letter.


The sadness of high summer is upon me. Full of ripe fecundity and rich greenness, showering her fruits upon the earth; exhausted she wanes to a mellow of dullness leaving behind the sharp exquisite stirrings of pregnant spring. She becomes vital, and descends…. To the aridness of winter that is my life without you. All the sap has gone from me with your going; I am but a decaying seed; until you with life and love do come again to quicken this sluggish being to a greater urgency.

I want to wander hand in hand beneath the stars, to play with the moonbeams and dance with the angels; I want tot run and walk and ride, and shout and laugh with you… to tear the gladness of the wind from out of the skies, so that might I watch it play in your hair; to gulp great breaths of the scented air that whirls with heavy intoxication around you. I want to listen to the hush of the wild things in your presence and watch the wild flowers bow beneath your feet and spring revitalised to a new pride in your caress. I want to kiss the brown earth with you and together press our bodies to the ground, becoming one with the awful rhythm

I want ………………!!

I want to drink from your lips. To lay my head in the lust valley of your breast "And seek lower where the greener pastures lie…. " My darling

I want you !!

And my soul must cry in agony … Alone !!

For you are gently and sweet and kind and must not scorch in the hell of my grand passion … For you are careful and the heady earthy realities of desire must not touch the calm serenity of your brow.

Therefore my darling .. forgive

Forgive … these hot jumbled notes, that in wanton fever I have written … forgive my mad importunity of Sunday night. Forgive and forget that I ever implied that I wanted you as anything but … a deity --- no mistress but a statue, so quickly … jump!!

My darling on to that pedestal from which you cam look down in understanding sympathy on the wrigglings of men – Wrap your soul in you divine music and so habited walk with the Gods and never come down

The light is shining in my eyes, your soul is blinding me… and I cry !! I am dead and dying a thousand deaths, with every death I worship a thousand times more your soul, your soul is choking me….

Oh Cruel !! arrows of desire my spirit is chained

Look up mine eyes .. I worship your soul

And kiss your hand … !!

God be with you in the days to come.


On re-reading letter ---

Damn you,

My sweet for making me quote poetry and write like a pimpled adolescent.

What I have been trying to say is that I had a marvellous weekend .. and that I am that I seem preoccupied with the carnal – you must try to forgive me and remember that we live a blighted existence as far as women are concerned.

And that as far as I am concerned I am perhaps too apt to express my love in bed … and not sufficiently in the drawing room.

I worry you … and am ashamed

I kiss your hand Tony

PS Don Address Sergeant D. Haycraft 107 AA Z Battery RA Glasgow

442 HAA Battery RA
Blantyreferme Camp


Forgive me if I seemed a little off hand on the phone – The line was so bad that I had to shout and the ante room was next door. Also that line can be tapped at the switch board or a number of other places.

Naturally I was a little shaken to hear that you had, without letting me know your intention, told the Mater , Peter and the girls – possibly it was the wisest and best move however definitely stunning !!

I think that now the issue has been forced – I am terribly glad .. though these war marriages are much against my principles ( and Frankly) I can only hope that I shall survive sufficiently whole to be a comfort and pleasure in the years to come – I hope!!

Now dates etc ..

First I must ask the Colonel’s permission to get married .. he is almost bound to grant that.. I do not plan to tell him in what circumstances – you don’t know our Colonel !!

Secondly we must have the bans published – ie. three weeks – your suggestion of next week is impossible on those grounds – I believe !!

Thirdly I am booked for a course T.C.O.’s ( which I cannot miss)

On the 1st Oct finishing or 14th or 15th Oct should be able to get a few days leave from 16th or so… how would that do.

About 3 ½ weeks from now I could write to Father [Kelly] straight away darling.

Question of money arises .. Gosh darling, you know I am penniless and haven’t really considered taking with me a wife until I was in a position to support you -- You will of course never understand that -- still there it is – You have induced the most gloomy prospects possible.

Write to me at once and suggest any alternatives you have in mind and especially

[*** any way *** ] you propose to get our marriage legally within a week ---- unless we are married in a registry office which it no marriage.

God bless you my darling and courage