"Letter writing is the only device for combining solitude with good company". Such an insightful expression was penned by British poet, George Gordon Byron, a.k.a. Lord Byron (1788 - 1824). Where’s it gone, that art of writing a letter; is it a lost art do you think?
An early introduction to writing our first personal messages was often via a parental prompt to write a thank-you note to relatives who’d gifted us on our birthdays. Sometimes in our childhood years or beyond, remember pen-friends?
Swan ink; it was a striking cobalt-blue ink I remember from my primary school-years, with a unique, subtle and lingering scent when opening the bottle. Nibbed pens and ink-wells got us started with ‘running-writing’. How about slope-cards; remember those? And the adage to perfect each letter with a light up-stroke, and then a heavy down-stroke. I’m slipping back pretty much fifty-seven years now, and that's scarey?! A year or two later we were allowed to start using biros, and gone were the days of ink-smudged fingers and exercise book pages. Oh, and blotters too.
Over the years, it was part of a delightful expectation, when in receipt of a personal letter, to decipher the hand-writing first up, and decide who’d written us, before actually opening the envelope.
Thank heavens I say for the typewriter, then the computer/keyboard, and being able then to tap words out so readily. So much more can be said when not threatened with hand cramps.
Emails slowly but surely replaced many of those letters of correspondence from our past. Essentially, it makes little difference that one has over-ridden the other. The fact that we continue to write, be it now in a differing format, is the up side, don't you think?Social media now, has pretty much soared over the top of, and long surpassed all correspondences of yester-year. With expediency at the top of the list, it can hardly be argued that it fulfills its purpose.
While the art of letter-writing may have faded, the art of keeping in touch via the written word is still alive and will always remain high priority to so many.
Yours in friendship,