Chapter 21 » 21.02


When I was about seven years old, I announced that my favourite text was ‘Hitherto hath the Lord helped me’. The elders were amused, but I am not so sure that it was funny after all. The distance from one birthday to the next seems infinite to a small child, and ‘the thoughts of youth are long, long thoughts’. Looking back over many years, I fancy my choice now would be much the same. I am not prepared, here and now, to analyse and define the reasons, but I can only say that this quiet certainty has run all through my life linking up babyhood and youth and middle age with the latest stretch of the road and ‘hitherto’, though sometimes almost slipping through one’s fingers, that golden thread has never wholly escaped my grasp.

Elizabeth Fox Howard, 1943

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