I wrote a huge number of letters that spring: one a week to Naoko, several to Reiko, and several more to Midori. I wrote letters in the classroom, I wrote letters at my desk at home with Seagull in my lap, I wrote letters at empty tables during my breaks at the Italian restaurant. It was as if I were writing letters to hold together the pieces of my crumbling life.
I realized how valuable the art and practice of writing letters are, and how important it is to remind people of what a treasure letters--handwritten letters--can be. In our throwaway era of quick phone calls, faxes, and email, it's all to easy never to find the time to write letters. That's a great pity--for historians and the rest of us.
Inrealized how valuable the art and practice of writing letters are, and how important it is to remind people of what a treasure letters-handwritten letters-can be. In our throwaway era of quick phone calls, faxes, and email, it's all to easy never to find the time to write letters. That's a great pity-for historians and the rest of us.
My father is my biggest literary influence. Recently, I've been looking through his letters. He was in the National Guard when I was a child, and whenever he left, he would write to me. He wrote letters to me all through college, and we still correspond. His letters, and my mother's, are one of my life's treasures.
I find things hidden in books: dried flowers, locks of hair, tickets, labels, receipt, invoices, photographs, postcards, all manner of cards. I find letters, unpublished works by the ordinary, the anguished, the illiterate. Clumsily written or eloquent, they are love letters, everyday letters, secret letters and mundane letters talking about fruit and babies and tennis matches, from people signing themselves as Majorie or Jean... I can't bring myself to dispose of these snippets and snapshots of lives that once meant (or still do mean) so much.
For those of you who still believe in the Easter Bunny and that the letters that appear in your local newspaper come from concerned citizens who really care, I've got troubling news. At least in politics, most of the letters that get published on the letters-to-the-editor page originate in the campaign headquarters of the candidates.
Four. That's what I want you to remember. If you don't get your idea across in the first four minutes, you won't do it. Four sentences to a paragraph. Four letters to a word. The most important words in the English language all have four letters. Home. Love. Food. Land. Peace. . .I know peace has five letters, but any damn fool knows it should have four.
Lyndon B. Johnson
You know when a company wants to use letters in their phone number, but often they'll use too many letters? "Call 1-800-I-Really-Enjoy-Brand-New-Carpeting." Too many letters, man, must I dial them all? "Hello? Hold on, man, I'm only on 'Enjoy.' How did you know I was calling? You're good, I can see why they hired you!"
The length of the friendship never brought astonishment. After all, the majority of Baby Boomers could likely claim a long-standing friendship in their lives. No, it was always the letters: the-pen-on-paper, inside a-stamped-envelope, mailed-in-a-mailbox letter that was awe inspiring. 'You've been writing a letter every week for almost thirty years?' The question always evokes disbelief, particularly since the dawn of the Internet and email. We quickly correct the misconception. 'Well, at least one letter, but usually more. We write each other three or four letters a week. And we never wait for a return letter before beginning another.' Conservatively speaking, at just three letters a week since 1987, that would equal 4, 368 letters each, but we'd both agree that estimate is much too low. We have, on occasion, written each other two letters in a single day.
Mary Potter Kenyon
If you stop to think about it, you'll have to admit that all the stories in the world consist essentially of twenty-six letters. The letters are always the same, only the arrangement varies. From letters words are formed, from words sentences, from sentences chapters, and from chapters stories.
First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross carried letters from a girl named Martha, a junior at Mount Sebastian College in New Jersey. They were not love letters, but Lieutenant Cross was hoping, so he kept them folded in plastic at the bottom of his rusack. In the late afternoon, after a day's march, he would dig his foxhole, wash his hands under a canteen, unwrap the letters, hold them with the tips of his fingers, and spend the last hour of light pretending.
[Mary Wortley Montagu] wrote more letters, with fewer punctuation marks, than any Englishwoman of her day; and her nephew, the fourth Baron Rokeby, nearly blinded himself in deciphering the two volumes of undated correspondence which were printed in 1810. Two more followed in 1813, after which the gallant Baron either died at his post or was smitten with despair; for sixty-eight cases of letters lay undisturbed ... 'Les morts n'ecrivent point,' said Madame de Maintenon hopefully; but of what benefit is this inactivity, when we still continue to receive their letters?
At the base level, it is about making connections and building relationships, but if you take the letters from networker out of the word COnNeCtworker, you are left with 4 letters. C. O. N. C. Victor, we actually talked about this at Carina's the other day with Sheila. C. O. N. C. stands for Considering Others' Needs Continually.
On the third, directly before me, were embedded more polished letters: PER OMNIA SAECULA SAECULORUM. For ever and ever. In the red light, the brushed steel glowed softly, like embers. The polish letters blazed. Without a hiss, For ever and ever slid aside, as though inviting me to eternity.
In a man's letters you know, Madam, his soul lies naked, his letters are only the mirror of his breast, whatever passes within him is shown undisguised in its natural process. Nothing is inverted, nothing distorted, you see systems in their elements, you discover actions in their motives.
But you want to know about the influence of books on my life, and as I've said, there was only one. Seneca. Do you know who he was? He was a Roman philosopher who wrote letters to imaginary friends telling them how to behave for the rest of their lives.. Maybe that sounds dull, but the letters aren't - they're witty. I think you learn more if you're laughing at the same time.
Mary Ann Shaffer
There is something intrinsically wrong about letters. For one thing they are not instantaneous. ... Nor is this the only trouble about letters. They do not arrive often enough. A letter which has been passionately awaited should be immediately supplemented by another one, to counteract the feeling of flatness that comes upon us when the agonizing delights of anticipation have been replaced by the colder flood of fulfilment.
We found letters at the house we bought from a sailor to his wife who lived in the house. He went down to the Caribbean on this trader vessel, bringing down salted fish. There would be handwritten letters, but also telegrams, saying which ports he was in. And he'd be gone for three months. That was just the way it is.
Let us consider letters - how they come at breakfast, and at night, with their yellow stamps and their green stamps, immortalized by the postmark - for to see one's own envelope on another's table is to realize how soon deeds sever and become alien. Then at last the power of the mind to quit the body is manifest, and perhaps we fear or hate or wish annihilated this phantom of ourselves, lying on the table. Still, there are letters that merely say how dinner's at seven; others ordering coal; making appointments. The hand in them is scarcely perceptible, let alone the voice or the scowl. Ah, but when the post knocks and the letter comes always the miracle seems repeated - speech attempted. Venerable are letters, infinitely brave, forlorn, and lost.
It is not quite true that there are no good letters written in America: among my own circle of correspondents there, there are ladies and gentlemen whose letters would stand a comparison with any for frankness, grace, and epistolary beauty of every kind. But I am not aware of any medium between this excellence and the boarding-school insignificance which characterizes the rest.
We have only to see a few letters of the alphabet spelling our name in the sand to recognize at once the work of an intelligent agent. How much more likely, then is the existence of an intelligent Creator behind human DNA, the colossal biological database that contains no fewer than 3.5 billion "letters the longest "word" yet discovered?"
Almost every day, for years now, he has taken pen in hand to write to her. He has no names or addresses to put on the envelopes: but he has a life to recount. And to whom, if not to her? He thinks that when they meet it will be wonderful to place the mahogany box full of letters on her lap and say to her, 'I was waiting for you.' She will open the box and slowly, when she so desires, read the letters one by one, and as she works her way back up the interminable thread of blue ink she will gather up the years - the days, the moments - that that man, before he even met her, had already given to her. Or perhaps, more simply, she will overturn the box and, astonished at that comical snowstorm of letters, she will smile, saying to that man, 'You are mad.' And she will love him forever.
In a man's letters, you know, madam, his soul lies naked. His letters are only the mirror of his heart. Whatever passes within him is there shown undisguised in its natural progress; nothing is invented, nothing distorted; you see systems in their elements, you discover action in their motives. Samuel Johnson to Mrs. Thrale (1777)
There are only so many letters in the alphabet. When I talk to young musicians or authors and they ask for advice, I say, 'You gotta learn all the letters of your own personal alphabet. With music, you need to know all the different kinds of music and everything in and around your given instrument.'
David Lee Roth
I mean, I get letters in the mail because I had a heart defect when I was one, I had surgeries and stuff. And so you get these letters in the mail that just, they are crazy, they are just like, yes, well our son is dealing with the same thing and we saw you on TV and I mean it is such a cool thing to inspire and kind of give hope.
A well-known magazine asks a man how they should refer to him, as Psychologist X, as Author X? He suggests man of letters, for that is what he is, in the eighteenth-century meaning. But they can't buy that because the word doesn't exist in Time-style; he cannot be that, and presumably the old function of letters cannot exist.
A Mantra is composed of certain letters arranged in definite sequence of sounds, of which the letters are the representative signs. To produce the designed effect, Mantra must be intoned in the proper way, according to rhythm and sound...a Mantra is a potent compelling force, a word of power.
Sir John Woodroffe
Education is like a diamond with many facets: It includes the basic mastery of numbers and letters that give us access to the treasury of human knowledge, accumulated and refined through the ages; it includes technical and vocational training as well as instruction in science, higher mathematics, and humane letters.
Every single day, I get letters - very moving, overwhelming letters - testifying how much my books have meant to people in times of crisis in their lives, when they were very ill, say. If I ever doubted that writing could play an important part in people's lives, I don't doubt that now.
Alexander McCall Smith
The creation of all those symbols and logotypes which are an ever more striking feature of the world in which we live calls for a new and fresh approach to lettering in the part of the designer. In these logotypes the combination of letters can be more or less obvious; but only deliberately contrived encounters of elements and confrontations of values can lead beyond the letters to new forms of expression.
Colter searched for original Mexican tiles to use as patterns for copies, and during the search, a barrel of old tile letters was found in a cellar corner. She decided to use the letters on the walls of the Cocina Cantina to spell out old Spanish proverbs about eating and drinking. Above the bar was "A vuestra salud" [to your health], and in another room, "Not with whom you were born, but with whom you pasture.
Virginia L. Grattan
It was also her nature that caused her letters to avoid emotional pitfalls and confine themselves to relating the events of her daily life in the utilitarian style of a ship's log. In reality they were distracted letters, intended to keep the coals alive without putting her hand in the fire, while Florentino Ariza burned himself alive in every line.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
I used to get letters from guys in prison. Anymore now I don't even open them. They'd ask me to please sign a couple of cards for their children. Then I see them on eBay two weeks later. Or the people that write and say, "You is one of my favorite cartoonists. I would like a drawing, please." I guess they encourage inmates to write letters to celebrities. It's like a way to make money by selling autographs or something. Give me a break.
Strangely enough, for many many years I didn't talk about my childhood and then when I did I got a ton of mail - literally within a year I got a couple of thousand letters from people who'd had a worse childhood, a similar childhood, a less-bad childhood, and the question that was most often posed to me in those letters was: how did you get past the trauma of being raised by a violent alcoholic?
The best cover letters I've read are from people who have a passion for my company, and can make that passion come to life on a page. The letters that make me say, 'Yes! This person really gets it.' Because, at the end of the day, I want to hire people who already get it. Most hiring managers do.
To order a wife by mail seemed strange to him indeed; so strange he could only open the letters in the confidential cloak of night, undisturbed by even the servants... " Lord Hartford's thoughts at the prospect of reading letters in response to his advertisement for a mail order bride in "To Find a Duchess
Lisa M. Prysock
When you come home, darling, I shant have your letters, but I shall have yourself, which is more- oh more, and better, than I can even think! I sit here with my little whip, cracking the time away, 'till not an hour is left of it- then you are here! And joy is here- joy now and forevermore! Tis only a few days, Susie, it will soon go away, yet I say, "go now, this very moment, for I need her- I must have her, oh, give her to me!" Sometimes when I do feel so, I think it may be wrong, and that God will punish me by taking you away; for He is very kind to let me write to you, and to give me your sweet letters, but my heart wants more.
LOVE LETTERS TO YOURSELF This is taken from a love letter (a gentle reminder) I wrote to myself recently. Live in your joy today. Be authentic. Love yourself. First. Love others from your own abundance. Life Changes. Circumstances change. Sometimes you try to fit your old way of being into new circumstances rather than becoming new yourself. Embrace transformation as an opportunity. And keep on writing love letters to yourself.
Mary Anne Radmacher
Chain letters like this are too easily forwarded to friends, family and colleagues without people using their common sense. Stories like this become urban legends, constantly being repeated without anyone bothering to check the facts. Hoaxes and chain letters like this are not harmless - they waste time and bandwidth, and can be a genuine headache for support departments. Users need to be more skeptical, and ask themselves whether everything they are told by email can be believed.
I had many, many, many death threats. I couldn't open letters for a long time, because they all had to be opened by either the FBI or somebody. I couldn't open letters. I had to be escorted. In fact, just recently I went to a funeral, Calvin Wardlaw, who was the detective -- the policeman -- with me for two years, passed away just recently. He and I got to be bosom buddies really, but that was the hardest part. I wasn't able to enjoy -- you know.
In middle school I used to draw letters of the alphabet out of contorted torsos, bodies, arms, legs. A rigid torso with one arm and one leg extended at straight angles out would form a 'K, ' for example. But then I realized how silly that was. People aren't letters, I thought, they're whole words. Words like 'Bob, ' or 'Dad.' (By the way, Bob is NOT my dad).
It took me a moment. I blinked, and suddenly it swam into focus and I had to frown very hard to keep myself from giggling out loud like the schoolgirl Deb had accused me of being. Because he had arranged the arms and legs in letters, and the letters spelled out a single small word: BOO. The three torsos were carefully arranged below the BOO in a quarter-circle, making a cute little Halloween smile. What a scamp.
And my father left me a legacy of his handwriting through letters and a notebook. In the last two years of his life, when he was sick, he filled a notebook with his thoughts about me... There are times when I want to trade all those years that I was too busy to sit with my dad and chat with him, and trade all those years for one hug. But too late. But that's when I take out his letters and I read them, and the paper that touched his hand is in mine, and I feel connected to him.
Many people believe letters the most personal and revealing form of communication. In them, we expect to find the charmer at his nap, slumped, open-mouthed, profoundly himself without thought for appearances. Yet, this is not quite true. Letters are above all useful as a means of expressing the ideal self; and no other method of communication is quite so good for this purpose. In conversation, those uneasy eyes upon you, those lips ready with an emendation before you have begun to speak, are a powerful deterrent to unreality, even to hope.
Share and Enjoy' is the company motto of the hugely successful Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Complaints Division, which now covers the major land masses of three medium-sized planets and is the only part of the Corporation to have shown a consistent profit in recent years. The motto stands- or rather stood- in three mile high illuminated letters near the Complaints Department spaceport on Eadrax. Unfortunately its weight was such that shortly after it was erected, the ground beneath the letters caved in and they dropped for nearly half their length through the offices of many talented young Complaints executives- now deceased. The protruding upper halves of the letters now appear, in the local language, to read "Go stick your head in a pig, " and are no longer illuminated, except at times of special celebration.
God lends us a little of His reasoning powers and that is how we think: He puts a little of His love into us and that is how we love one another. When you teach a child writing, you hold its hand while it forms the letters: that is, it forms the letters because you are forming them. We love and reason because God loves and reasons and holds our hand while we do it.
C. S. Lewis
Typing is an essential skill, but it can be painful. Some children just don't know where the letters are. Typing a three-page story, when they have to spend minutes hunting for every letter, can take forever. Yet we tend to assume that children can type, partly because quite a lot of us know where quite a lot of the letters are, so we assume that children do, too.
[Henry Miller] was such a scribomaniac that even when he lived in the same house as Lawrence Durrell they often exchanged letters. For most of his life, Henry wrote literally dozens of letters a day to people he could have easily engaged in conversation - and did. The writing process, in short, was essential. As it is to all real writers, writing was life and breath to him. He put out words as a tree puts out leaves.