truly it is a wonderful event when someone takes time to compose a correspondence - not for a general email list - but with one sensitivity in mind. Letters to the world - Linda C. Ehrlich
I love handwritten letters. Not only the many possible contents of the writing is what intrigues me, but the tactility of paper, the handwriting as a trace of someones personality, the wrapping up in an envelope and then the travel of the envelope connecting two places through an invisible thread.
The envelope that arrives wrinkled, scratched, stamped after its travel is a story in itself of how two people are connected.
This Sunday on the marche D' Aligre I found several love letters.
Four letters in 4 pink envelopes and 1letter in a beautiful off-white envelope, recognizable as a love letter because it said "pour mon poulet" on the backside.
I felt a little strange to buy someone else's love letter, but I was excited at the same time; it brought back memories of my first love.
He was French and lived in the South of France. I was living in Amsterdam at that time.
It was a time before smartphones and extensive text messaging was common, we could phone of course, but we wrote love letters. It was very romantic and exciting; the endless longing of days waiting in between each letter, up to the moment the letter fell through the letterbox.
the pink envelopes
The frontside of the 4 pink envelopes contain a short 2 sentenced poem.
It is written with a fountain pen in blue ink in the lefthand corner and signed by the initials 'AB'.
In the middle on the frontside the letterwriter addresses his love with writings like: " Vas…., vers celle que j'aime" or "Pour Minouche que j'aime". On the backsides of the envelopes, in the righthand corner, there is a little number legible. Apparently I have bought envelope number 1,5,9 and 16. I am not sure if this is the receiver or the sender or someone else who have numbered these envelopes.
An envelope has four flaps, the bigger one encloses the letter into the envelope.
The point of the "closing flap" has been marked by the initials AB, like a wax seal.
I can see that the letters have been carefully open-end with a sharp object by its receiver.
The first letter (no. 1) is written on Friday at 21.00
chère Gisèle, the letter starts.
It is man who has written this letter
He describes how he is in front of a photograph of her and her ring,
objects that only remind him of her and her physical presence that is missing right now.
He is only thinking of her again and again.
He continues for 4 pages how he loves her and needs her by his side.
The size of the paper is determines his message.
Then there is the other envelope "pour mon poulet"
Inside this envelope is a letter written by a woman.
The letter ends with 'ta petite Gisou'
I wonder if this might be a nickname for Gisèle, the woman
who has received the 4 pink envelopes from AB.
When my grandmother died my family took several days to empty the huge house she had been living in.
Many wonderful objects, letters, photographs and I do not want to know what else ended up in the garbage bin.
In between the rubble I managed to save a few letters written to my grandfather and my grandmother during the second world war
as well as some letters send to my great grandmother around 1890.
One of the letterwriters used a very special 'letterwriting-technique'.
Beautiful graphics are composed to save the space of the paper, but are hardly legible nowadays.