The Post

River of Stones: Day 3

A stack of cards and letters to mail. The parchment and paper covered with words, handwritten and imperfect. No spell check but definitely mind check. When pen tip set down on paper, the mind must slow and wait for the motors signals to move the hand. It limits the rate of thoughts or the pronouncements and proclamations. And the immediacy of [SEND] is lost, replaced by the post master and letter carrier; expression is limited by the locked mailbox and the physical act of collecting the mail. The mail is the bastion of bills and bulk rate. It was once the only way to connect to family and intimates. Long distance phone calls were once costly and private conversations were reserved for the home, not the cereal aisle at Publix. As the ability to connect is replaced by nationwide coverage and snippet verbiage via the ether, the written letter still contains one of the purest and most intimate methods to touch another’s heart and be present in their space. I wrote small notes to distant relatives and once in laws. I included school pictures of my sons. I wrote a letter of encouragement and endearment to one setting himself upon a new journey. I wrote the tentative re-acquaintance letter to one estranged, someone to whom I am deeply connected but the chasm of space that resides between us cannot be traversed with the casual phone call. She can open the letter and consider if the connection is worth the energy.

I like the civility of a letter. I wish to express myself well. Typing on a keyboard, creating a letter composed of binary fractals, distances me from myself. Email takes little effort. Text messages taps and poke but are unable to replace the genuine hug of conversation. To nourish my own soul and to feed those to whom I feel connected and intimate, I will write letters. Time is my most prized possession, a rare commodity that drops randomly. To send a letter handwritten is to give another my time as a gift without demands or expectations.

Now, I need a white gloved butler to stand at my door with a silver tray to collect my letters and a mail boy on a fast pony to deliver them. That is a lovely thought.

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