Had to share this piece from yesterday’s Washington Post because it speaks to a romantic part of me that longs for the days of beautifully composed letters
Writer Kristin Henderson, who has written about how military spouses are coping with the war in Iraq, unlocks the secret of love letters from some of the most famous literary correspondents (such as Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald and Edith Wharton and Morton Fullerton), but she also writes of love letters to Civil War soldiers and modern-day e-mail romances that span the globe.
The love letter, whether it’s handwritten or electronic, represents the tangible. Lovingly written letters can cause a pheromonal reaction in its recipient and can be the closest thing to having your loved one near. It's why people throughout time have cherished them, dressing them in ribbons or tucking them safely into secret boxes.
She writes: “Walking hand in hand. Eating together. Lying together in each other's arms. Romantic love is so closely linked with physical contact that when we can't see or touch the ones we love, they can start to seem like figments of the imagination. Then we long to feel the reality of their skin beneath our hands, their breath against our cheek. Maybe that longing is what impels us to write, the longing to make the other person real again, because, unlike phone calls, which exist only in memory once we hang up, the written word lasts. It's real.”