Page:Lettres d'un innocent; the letters of Captain Dreyfus to his wife ; (IA lettresduninnoce00drey).pdf/97

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warmed my poor frozen heart. I used to read and reread your letters. I absorbed each word. Little by little the written words were transformed and given a voice—it seemed to me that I could hear you speaking; that you were by my side. Oh, the delicious music that whispered to my soul! Now, for four days nothing but my dreary sorrow, the appalling solitude.

Truly I ask myself how I live. Night and day my sole companion is my brain. I have nothing to do except to weep over our misfortunes.

Last night when I thought of all my past life, of all my labor, of all that I have done in order to acquire an honorable position, . . . then when I compared that with my present lot, sobs seized my throat; it seemed that my heart was being torn asunder; and, so that my guards should not hear me—I was so ashamed of my weakness—I stifled my sobs with the coverings of my bed.

Oh, it is too cruel!

How I prove to-day by my own experience that it is sometimes harder to live than to die!

To die would be to pass a moment of suffering; but it would be to forget all my woes, all my tortures.

On the other hand, to carry each day the weight of suffering, to feel the heart bleed, and to endure this torment in every nerve, to feel every fibre of my being tremble, to suffer the undying martyrdom of the heart, this is terrible.

But I have not the right to die. We have none of us that right. We shall have it only after the truth shall have been brought to light; only when my honor shall have been given back to me. Until then we must live. I bend every effort to this task, to live. I try to annihi-