Mary Campisi
Mary Campisi
Mary Campisi

Charles’s Final Letter to Harry

  1. Charles Blackworth's final letter to Harry 3:07


I’m writing this letter because I need your help and I’m not sure I can get the words out any other way. I’ve been living a lie—a big one—and I can’t do it any longer. I don’t want to do it any longer.

I’m in love with another woman. Her name is Miriam and I met her shortly after Ellie died when I started coming to the cabin every month. Ellie’s death made me realize a lot of things, especially my own mortality and the fleetingness of life. Miriam and I have been together fourteen years and we share a child named Lily. Yes, I really did just write that. Lily is pure and innocent and when I’m in Magdalena I’m alive. Really alive. It’s my life in Chicago that has become the lie, but it’s been a lie since long before I met Miriam.

What I’m about to write is a deep, painful secret I’ve kept hidden for years. I’m telling you now because I need your help with Christine. This secret destroyed our marriage even though it took years to acknowledge it. Gloria had an affair before Christine was born. 

I can see the shock on your face, probably as great as mine was. Shortly after I learned of the affair, she found out she was pregnant. I moved out of the bedroom, distanced myself and planned to divorce her if the child didn’t look like me. But there’s no denying Christine is a Blacksworth from the hair to the eyes. For that, I am grateful.

I loved Gloria but I was so immersed in work and reaching the goals Dad set for me that I didn’t take time to be a good husband. I didn’t know how to be one. Something shriveled inside me when I found out about the affair and once Christine was born, my hope and love went into her. Gloria will not take this easily but I AM leaving. I plan to move to Magdalena and will visit Chicago four days a month to conduct business. I’m stepping down as CEO of the company and would like you to consider a larger role. You have a lot of talent but you get in your own way.

Maybe one day you can visit Magdalena. I think you’d like it. The people are a good, honest bunch. I’d like you to meet Miriam and my daughter, Lily, and I would love for Christine to meet them one day, too, but how would that ever happen? It will have to remain an unfulfilled wish.

You’ve never been one to judge—thank you for that. I’m going to need all the help and support I can get and I know I can count on you. I’ll be home in a few days and we’ll discuss this in greater detail.


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