An Ode to the Handwritten Note



The handwritten note is dead. Paved over by pixels. Bludgeoned by bytes. It’s been gone for years. Thrown to the curb like the things found at the back of closets during spring cleaning.


 But I want it back. The romance of a poem, a story, a letter, written in liquid verse by a soft, warm hand. Words in black, felt tip loops with edges that don’t line up. Paper with blue lines. Remember that?


 It’s been a long time since I received a handwritten letter. Even longer since I wrote one. And I can’t remember the last time I sat down to write a poem inside a journal, a notebook, a piece of scrap paper found at the bottom of my purse. Now it’s me – one on one with my keyboard. Tap, tap, tap, tap. Enter. Save. Delete.


 There are no candles to light the way. No paraffin flickers to ignite the flight into my imagination. Just white computer light. Where’s the soft, orange, waxy light of my youth? Gone with felt tips and fat journals ripe with juicy, scribbled, crossed out words.


 Before I was married, before I claimed the title of motherhood, I write poetry, cross legged on my single bed. After school, or during summer nights when no one called, I hunkered down in my bedroom, equipped with scented candles, notebook, pens and music blaring. Each blank sheet was filled with promise. I was a lover anticipating a moonlit kiss. And I delivered line after sorry line. 


Then I got a computer, and pen and paper were put to rest like an old dog whose gait can’t keep up. Whose eyes are sad and wise and accepting of the new pup.


 Rest in peace dear old dog. Gone, but not forgotten.



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