Aron’s Notebook Pages 14 to 21 are a draft of a letter from Aron to Polya.
The 6th letter
02/11 according to them
I am in a hurry to greet you like the first swallow is greeting the spring. I am writing a next letter to you without waiting for your response. I don’t have enough patience, and I am apt to hurry to see you. After each letter it seems like I feel much better. First of all I have a request, and I don’t think you will turn it down. Because I do not receive properly your letters sent poste restante (for instance I received just one post card), you do not honor our terms and conditions. I have to go to the post office and it is very inconvenient for me. From now on please write to me to the address: Yekaterininskyaya Street, number 62. For Shushish Toprovskiy un care of A.B.
Tsilya told me the other day that you have sent a letter to me, but I went to the post office three times already, and they told me there is no letter for me. Now I will wait for your letters at the new address within 9 days. On the 19th of February, or on the 6th according to our calendar. Also I would like to know how many letters you had sent poste restante, so I could claim them. I apologize upfront, but I want to dwell on a sore subject bothering both of us. You said: Separation-separation, longing-longing, but I will tell you: It is my ethical duty to let you know that you are my friend, my life. I belong to you as whole and that’s why I ache.
Not in vain I’ve told you that it is going to be much difficult for me than for you after you have left. Because you have got some changes, you are among new people, and you can have some fun while I- God only knows why- am struggling.
There is no doubt that you will be very sympathetic towards me. I am confounded by the unknown power. I am seized of that subtle power, and I don’t have any strength to fight it. I can feel it every time I make a step, every moment. You left behind the image, the power I am not able to conceal or to give for that matter to the Almighty, even the imitation of it.
Sometimes I forget where I am, and it seems like you are going to appear in front of me. I am coming up to you, giving you a hug…Your departure affected me a lot. I cannot bear it. As it strikes me, if we lived for 20 years it could not have been more difficult time than this short period. The visionary form of you follows me each step I make, everywhere. When I see a young lady wearing a coat, it seems to me that that lady is you, and I want to run towards you.
And that nightmare hag-rides me everywhere every day so I forget about my personal existence. 8 o’clock in evening. What a feeling! My God! God!!!
The question is: What to do, who to meet, where to go? Who to talk to? Literally, nothing exists for me. In front of me I can see the walking corpses only that have nothing to do with me. I am walking home alone, without you. While walking, I feel my legs sinking under me because of the sorrow and difficult thoughts. I am not able to go upstairs because I remember when you were with me. Oh my God!!! How fast the time flashed by! I enter my room, lock the door, eat my dinner alone as a prisoner. It is sad and dreary!
Not a sound is heard. You can hear the walls and the ceiling. Everything in my room is looking at me, everything around me is crying because of the sorrow. I am looking at your chair. It is empty, and my eyes are hurting full of tears. Oh dear, how hard it is! I can’t eat dinner, I can’t sit, and I shiver with cold. I have one question only: When can I see you again? This thought supports me that I will be able to see you soon that we will be together soon, that the time flies fast, and that the happy times will come for both of us. Correct, Pulya? I remember – it happened not long ago- that we were at my place, we were sitting on my bed, and we came to a conclusion not to get apart.
We will be friends forever and ever; the long way is lying ahead of us, the way across the Great Ocean. Once you told me that you were afraid of comforting another man. Then you saw that I was the first one, and I will stay the first one. I go out of my mind sometimes, and I am cold. Everything is in my memory. I look at that place and it seems to me like everything happened just yesterday. But then the time flies, and we will be together soon. I cannot write about it anymore. In your card you are writing that your father doesn’t have a job, but he will find one! He can’t make you find the job because you are going to stay there for 2 -2 ½ months.
If you will stay longer, then you should find a job!! Moreover, you are from him… (not clear-S.A.) His health declined considerably within this time. Write me a lot, write to me what you are doing, how you are feeling, what is your health like. If you need something, you may buy it for yourself. Did you buy a hat? I am begging you not to grieve, not to feel sad, to be strong and to feel fit. Don’t let things get you down! Live your life, go for a walk, go to the theaters, and get well. You are good, Pulya. You will see me beside you soon. I cannot write any more, it is late now; I want to take a rest, just a bit. I do not sleep during the night. Your loving, Arnoldushka