945. Robert Southey to Mary Barker, 29 May  *
Miss Mary – or dear Miss Mary to write in the old way – if you will for a moment recollect how I am worn down to the very bone by business you will excuse me for not writing till now, & for now writing so hastily. I have taken my place in the Brummejams  coach for Friday afternoon next. which (God willing) will carry me to that sweet town on Saturday afternoon. I shall endeavour to make my way to Penkridge by way of Walsall  that night, if not as early as possible on Sunday morning – & of course you know that the sooner we get into the coach together the better. I know nothing of the stages about Penkridge but a long coach passes thro Stone,  where we may be sure of places.
God bless you –
yrs in filth, fatigue & ill humour
Tuesday May 29 – being the most rascally day in the Kalendar. 
* Address: To/ Miss Barker/ Congreve/ Penkridge/ Staffordshire
Postmark: [partial] A. MA. 30 804
MS: MS untraced; text is taken from Robert Galloway Kirkpatrick, ‘The Letters of Robert Southey to Mary Barker From 1800 to 1826’ (unpublished PhD, Harvard, 1967), p. 117.