Vol 3 Section 0605

1901                                                                            549

At Bar Harbor, Mark Twain demonstrated speech-making technique to a group of young people. When he asked for a text, they gave him “Marriage Engagements.” He said he had noticed that few girls knew how to blush properly, and that he hoped to have a class to whom he might teach the art of the Graduated Blush. A well -trained girl, he said, would not furnish a pale No.1 blush when the occasion called for a vivid No. 6 or a crimson No.14. He illustrated by concentrating on one of the girls present—to get back at her for suggesting the topic—but says that he let her off before producing the No. 31 Conflagration.

Sam’s remembered speech:

Now here at my side sits a young lady to whom I have given nineteen lessons, and I will prove to you that she is an expert. When I call for a No. 1 she’ll not make the mistake of furnishing a No. 4, which would be overdoing it. When I call for a No. 10, No. 14, and so on, you will see the exactly proper and requisite sunset flush rise in these beautiful cheeks—there, just that casual little remark, you see, brings a No. 2. Now if you will look into her lovely blue eyes, if you will examine her charming features, her satin skin, her tawny hair, the fine intelligence which beams in her face—there now, look at that! Here where I touch her cheek with my finger an inch in front of her dainty ear, is the meridian which marks the degrees reaching from 1 to 5. See the color steal toward 5. Now it crosses it. Keep your eye on it. I move my finger forward toward her delicate nostril—see the rich blood follow it! When I tell you that here is the loveliest form, the loveliest spirit that perhaps exists in the world today, that she is a darling of the darlings—but I need go no further. The blush has reached her nostril and her collar, and is a No. 16—the most engaging blush, the most charming blush, the most beautiful blush that can adorn the face of any earthly angel, save and except the No. 31, which is the last and final possibility, and is called the “San Francisco, or the Combined Earthquake and Conflagration.” I will now produce that blush [MT Speaking 403]. Note: the remembrance of this speech included the 1906 S.F. earthquake and fire, which had not yet occurred. So it was with Sam’s memory.

August 15 ThursdayThe Kanawha stopped in Rockland, Maine, 40 miles n. of Bath [MTHHR 468n1].

Sam’s Ship log: August 15, Thursday. Bass’s Bay.


To Rockland, Maine, in the afternoon, arriving about 6 p.m. In the night Dr. Rice baited the anchor with his winnings & caught a whale 90 feet long, he says. It is thought that if there had been another witness like Dr. Rice the whale would have been longer.

The spectre [of the umbrella] still walks [MTP; Dias, Odd Couple 103 somewhat varied].

August 16 FridayThe Kanawha was nearing Bath, Maine at noon on its return leg to N.Y.C. when Sam wrote to Livy. The letter was postmarked Aug. 17 from Bath.

Livy darling, only a line to say I love you. One can’t write, there is too much motion. But the sea & the sun are incomparable, after this dull week of lying at anchor in the eternal fog. A while ago we had a fleet of yachts spinning by us—19 of them, with their white wings towering into the sky.

The glory & flash & splendor of the sea is a picture to look at, to-day.

I telegraphed you yesterday & to-day [neither extant], & am expecting to hear from you this afternoon.

I hope to find a letter at the Grosvenor when I get there—I don’t know when that will be, as we do not run in fog or darkness [MTP]. Note: the yacht also stopped in Boothbay, near Bath [MTHHR 468n1].

Sam’s Ship log: August 16, Friday. Rockland.

Splendid weather, fresh & sunny. Met fleet of 19 yachts.

Reached Bath at 2.30.

Went up the charming Kennebec river a few miles in the launch; then back, & the garrison went ashore for nothing; got it, & returned to the ship.

We could have had a happy time in Bath but for the interruptions caused by people who wanted the ex-Speaker [Reed] to explain votes of the olden time or give back the money. Mr. Rogers recouped them [MTP]

SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.