#0440: Willa Cather to Frances Smith Cather, November 11 [1918]

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My Dear Aunt Franc1:

On this first day of the greats Peace, when this city2 is mad with joy and all the church bells are ringing, my heart turns to you who have helped to pay the dear price for all that this world has gained. Think of it, for the first time since human society has existed on this planet, the sun rose this morning upon a world in which not one great monarchy or tyranny existed. You remember Emerson5 once wrote that one day God would say, "I am tired of Kings."6 I know you will wish that G. P.7 had lived to see this glorious day, and to help in the reconstruction work which must follow. But when I think of him I think of the last act of Macbeth8, when they bring old Siward word that his son is slain in his first battle, and the old man says, "Why then, God's soldier be he!"

I like to feel that G. P. and the brave boys who fell with him, who went so far to fight for an ideal and for that only, became and are God's soldiers. Whatever the after life may be, I know they have a glorious part in it.

This is not meant to be a letter—I have so many letters to write to friends who have been bereaved by this terrible scourge of Influenza9—but I must send you a greeting on this great day when old things are passing away forever. It is a day when we think of all the people we love, and I must send a word to mother10 and father11, too. Goodbye now, and let us be thankful that we have both lived to see this day, and to know that our countrymen and kindred have done such noble things to bring it about. I love to see our flag in the churches. It seems to me to belong there more than it ever has before.

Very lovingly Willie

I enclose a letter from Elsie12. Do not return it.