I needed this little bit of patriotic philosophy from the past to dull the taste of the nasty political campaign that’s happening in the present:
Because they are loyal, young Americans. They’ll try to do their best—After they are married they want their children to have the same free land that they had when they were younger—the same opportunities to better their ways of living. They won’t be under a Swastika or Rising Sun if these two young
people and millions of others like them can help it
A transcript follows the letter images.
Apr. 12, 1942
One warm summer day on Apr. 12, 1942, two tired, forlorn, homesick soldier boys trudged wearily down a cement highway (illegible cross out) that ran between the rolling hills of Eastern Kansas. In the distance the hills seemed to shimmer in the heat haze that rose of the dry, parched earth; close by the dust rose in (illegible cross out) small spirals that wandered hither and yon driven by a dry, hot wind that seemed to crack the skin, seemed even to dry the moisture of your eyes so that you hated to close them, but, that was caused partly by the dust—dust that made it very hard to breath and every time you closed your teeth together it felt like a file grinding against steel.
One of the boys mention that he wishes he was back along the Ohio river, that is where his home is (illegible cross out) located. In his mind, I imagine, he is comparing this God forsaken country with his home. The other boy, I know, can see no resemblance between this land of blowing dust, and the green forested hills of Pennsylvania;—They think mostly tho—don’t carry on much conversation (illegible cross out), if they did it would mean more dust to (illegible cross out) rasp between their teeth.
The fellow from Pennsy probably wouldn’t have much to say anyway as his mind is wandering to the pleasant weeks and months he spent before he came to the Middle West,—thinking of the beautiful girl he left in Ohio and wandering if she is thinking of him too.
He hesitates to look into the future—maybe on Apr. 12th a year from now—maybe—where will he be?—This far from her or farther yet—maybe—two years will pass before he thinks of (
happy) happier days that are left behind and who knows what in the future days to come.—He can smile a little and throw his shoulders back just a little farther, step out a little farther, (illegible cross out) he doesn’t mind the dust or heat as much as he did a few moments before; For he knows that she is wandering a little, worrying a little,—and he also knows that she is standing just behind him—pushing just when needed,—at times she feel so close that it seems he can almost touch her. She also can smile a little, raise her head a little higher—Why?—(illegible cross out) Why? Because they are loyal, young Americans. (illegible cross out) They’ll try to do their best—(illegible cross out) After they are married they want their children to have the
same free land that they had when they were younger—the same opportunities to better their ways of living. They won’t be under a Swastika or (illegible cross out) Rising Sun if these two young
pelp people and millions of others like them can help it——
Amen, brother Ben, shot a rooster and killed a hen. Ha.
I just tho’t I’d see what I could write—If I new my English a little better and had a bit more imagination I’d try to sell one. I should of finished by saying that we finally got to town and got a coca cola and then hitch-hiked back to camp.
Goodness me Dearest—I reiceved two letters from you today and they were both written on the same day. Good for you.
Perrish and I did hitch-hike into Manhattan to-day—he had $.60—we went to the Social Center and played some records till we got homesick and then went and bought a hamburg—then hitched back to Camp. It was hot then but is getting cooler fast.
You even write me when you are soak and wet, Well, just goes to prove what I said above even if I did joke at the end—there is more truth then poetry in it. I am sure lucky
to have a sweetheart like you. Nobody else could ever take the place of Ruth Dailey in my life.
I just took a brief spell and shaved, but here I am again. but have almost run out of a subject to talk about.
It is twilight now, sun is down and it is getting dusk. The wind always seems to die down a little in the evening for a while—it get quiet except for a slight hum of fellows talk—around the barracks.—I talk like an old man but I kind of like this time of day best—If I had
my a pipe I would be more or less content (under the circumstances)
Well Honey—Guess I will say Goodnight and dream a while—maybe if you listen hard enough you’ll be able to hear me say
I love you dearest
x Walt x
Note inside envelope: If you likem letter, Miybe me writtem ‘nother one