A sudden void.A gut instinct tells me I left behind something that is mine.I take a deep breath.A hint of a shudder runs through my heart.The void reluctantly vanishes.I walk on away from the read Post Box into which I had just dropped a letter.
My bond with letters began two years ago when I penned my first letter to a dear childhood friend.I had just shifted out from my hometown to a strange place for higher education when nostalgia bit me.It was a long one, the letter.It ran into 3-4 foolscap sheets filled with descriptions of my new environs.The college,students,teachers,friends,grandma,cousins,food,the atmosphere,everything.I even included a tid-bit about a weird looking eatable that our college canteen served.
That was just the beginning.Since then,I have ,when inspired,turned to the fascinating experience of penning a letter.
To buy an envelop, the right stamp and paper.To steal a little while from my selfish schedule.To settle down at my table all alone with just my pen,paper and thoughts for company.To write.
As my pen runs accross the white sheet of paper,in the deep blue ink is congealed my joys,sorrows,fears,worries,thoughts and feelings.The words hold within them bits and pieces of my mind,my heart.As I write, I pour my self a little at a time into each word.When I sign it,I embalm the words with the love drawn from the well of my heart.
Concern and regard is enclosed in the gentle folds of the letter before it is inserted into the carefully chosen envelop.
A pinch of anxiety is sprinkled on the address as it is jotted down....Will this reach my friend.......?
The stamp is stuck and confidence pressed onto it.The letter is ready for it's perilous journey preceeding it's rendezvous with my friend.
I clutch the letter afraid of losing it.For now,what I hold in my hand is not just a piece of paper with some ink on it but a peice of paper with a bit of my heart sealed within the dried ink.
What I feel now, as I walk up to the red Post Box is,I guess,a sliver of what a father feels as he leads his daughter to the altar to be handed over to the uncertain arms of matrimony.
When finally I let go, a void.A momentary sense of loss.
My romance with letters is fresh,young and one-sided.I have only had the pleasure of writing them.Not reading.
I've always wondered what it would feel like to recieve an envelop addressed to me.To hold it in my hands.To run my fingers over it,relish the thrill,suspense and excitement of not knowing what the contents of the virgin letter tucked snugly within are.To open it and know that I am the first to do so.......
Yesterday,while arranging books in our college library,my friend stumbled upon an old inland letter hidden in between the aged pages of a huge,dusty Economics text.A letter written,posted,recieved,read and forgotten in a library book 18 years before I was born.
The date on the yellowed,frail paper said, 28-5-1973.
The pain of the writer at being forgotten by a dear friend and the anxiety with which she awaits a reply still echo in her words.A voice from the past.Did she ever get a reply?Or, is she still waiting after 38 long years.........?
A letter, a chip off a heart.