Friday, April 4, 2014

Old Letters



My grandmother's letters
followed me everywhere.
They were her eyes, her conscience,
keeping me on the right path.
Sometimes, they burned.
Mostly, they said, "I understand."

They were typewritten, 
stream of consciousness,
all one sentence, 
full of whatever was happening,
which continued 
to the bottom of the page
and closed, mid-thought,
with her scribbled "Grandma"
crowded on an angle
into the right hand corner.

And I would give anything
to hold just one of them
once more
in my hand.

posted for Fireblossom Friday's prompt at Real Toads : to write about a letter.

30 comments:

  1. This is paced beautifully, Sherry. That last stanza kind of sneaks up on you and breaks your heart.

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  2. I wonder if we truly appreciated their worth when we received them. I would also like to hold one of my grandmother's letters in my hand today.

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  3. So wonderful that she wrote you letters, Sherry. There really is nothing like a REAL letter fro someone. I wonder if today's children will know this kind of thing at all.

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  4. Letters are some of the few things I have kept--and I'm glad, because as you say here, Sherry, so much of the person is in them, it's as if they are with you again. So sorry you no longer have your grandmother's words to you.

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  5. This is so touching Sherry. It makes me think we should al start writing letters to our children, grand-children, etc.

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  6. When they're gone things from them become precious.

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  7. i have an old travel journal of my grandmothers from her trips to europe...its pretty amazing and about the only way i know anything about her since she passed when i was 5

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  8. Letters are treasures. I have saved so many. This is a beautiful tribute your grandmother. I too wish you could hold at least one in your hand.

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  9. That's the wonderful thing about paper correspondence, you can keep it and hold it in your hands, even years later. I always love stories of lost letters that get delivered years later, sometimes after the author has passed on, as in the case of letters home from soldiers.

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  10. Darling Sherry,
    Lovely, lovely, lovely.

    I remember writing about my Mum's letters to me. I know how wonderful these letters are. An apt reminder perhaps I should start writing to my daughters in college. I doubt they would keep my Wapp messages and emails!

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  11. I have some, and as you say ... yes. Her longer letters are German, a language I never learned well enough to appreciate.

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  12. This is so touching and makes my heart hurt!
    A cherished tribute to a wonderful woman-who held your heart in her hands~ How touching...

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  13. My Nana used to write my name in cursive, diagonally in the upper left hand corner of all my birthday cards and she would sign them, God loves you Kara and so do we, love nana and papa.

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  14. Such a touching memory. I wish I still had some of those old letters from my grandfather in his perfect cursive script.

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  15. Isn't that lovely--even if sad-- wonderful image of the letters all one sentence! Just lovely. k.

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  16. the thrill of getting a letter is no more, and we are adjusting to this loss...but a loss is a loss..
    beautiful lines Sherry

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  17. I understand why you would treasure these letters, Sherry. My grandfather sent me postcards from all the different places he went to. He did the same with each of his grandchildren. We each got our special card, and felt loved.

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  18. i never really got to know my abuelita in mexico.
    i would observe her from afar. she was very stoic and stern. i'm sure loving though. typewriters in Mexico back then were for only the mestiso oligarchs. before my mamasita passed, i used to type her letters and send them in hard copy for her to read. near the last year, she became so distracted by alzheimers that my sister would read them to her but after a while my sister told me she was not comprehending and the i should take time to send them. i still wrote her but kept them in an archive in my computer.

    gracias mi amiga

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  19. ..that i should not take time to send them...

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  20. They are precious letters Sherry ~ I still keep my mom's letters are her handwriting is just flowery & beautiful, smiles ~

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  21. You learned a great deal from her, Sherry. Easy to see why you feel the way that you do.

    Elizabeth

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  22. there are a lot of "just one more times" in life; you depicted well

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  23. The value you hold in her is permeating...a gorgeous write, Sherry.

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  24. So beautifully expressed. Brought my beloved grandmother to mind too. She is so missed too.

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  25. so emotional and engaging. the feminine lines of communication:)

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  26. This made me cry. I feel this way about my Grampy. I miss him every day. Beautiful poem.
    P.S. It has been awhile, but it is my intent to become more active with my writing. Sometimes we over-commit to others, neglecting our own happiness. I apologize for my absence.

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  27. Sherry, this was so touching and real and heartbreaking...all wrapped up. I loved it.

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  28. Nice nostalgic piece, and great closing stanza. I can see the letter in my mind. Perfect.

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  29. … all one sentence!

    Love that. They didn't like to waste anything - my grandmother turned everything into a note pad - if the back was empty or margins wide - it was cut up and used! Yes, my grandmother's tiny journal of Yellowstone is a treasure to me.

    Very sweet poem. I have a hard time thinking you threw them away - makes me think they were involved in an accident (fire?) or something.

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  30. how will our kids link to their past, without the written word? ~

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Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!