The Hand Written Note

Image“There’s that silver pen that I haven’t used for quite a while.  I thought I put it in that drawer but I must have moved it.”

A note.  Thoughts shared between two people with no other audience.  A note.  Hand written to make words have meaning.  A note.  Saved and savored, some forever.

“Oh, the pen was right were I left it on the shelve.  Now, where’s all that stationary that I’ve been saving and haven’t used for years.  Good, there it is.  Let’s see, how do I begin.”

A phone’s text message gives the facts, Twitter has a limit with no feeling, Instagram eludes me and an email tries but always fails to convey something more.

“Ummm, where to start, where to begin.  It’s just a ‘thank you’ note but I want to convey how much I felt about our time together.  ‘Hi,’ ‘Greetings,’ ‘Dear,’ all seem to be ambiguous and vague.  Well, I like ‘Dear’ for its proper beginning.  Oh goodness, look at my handwriting after years of computer typing.  I can barely read it, how am I to expect my friend to enjoy this hand written note.  Oh, it doesn’t matter because this is authentic.”

Telephone calls are still in operation, you can always leave a message.  You can also assume your gratitude toward the enjoyable evening with your friend and know that she enjoyed it as well.  You can also talk about the previous enjoyable evening during the next unplanned enjoyable evening with your friend in the unknown future.  After all, we are all going to live forever.

“Just look at my lines, they all uphill.  When did I start to write this way.  Since I’m left-handed, some of the ink stays with my fingers and runs into the previous words.  Oh my, how did people do this years ago?”

There, finished.  I can’t proof read or correct it because it’s down there in all its glorious and dried ink.  It is forever written and preserved for my recipient. 

My email was sent an hour ago, my other technological methods were completed in less time and I’m now watching television and working on my next project.  I’m glad I sent that message to my good friend.

“I need to carefully fold the message and place it in the envelope.  I hate when the creases don’t match.  I left an envelope here somewhere, oh, there it is.  I’ll lick it closed and now carefully write the address on the front of the envelope along with my return address in case it needs to be returned to me after its days-long flight toward its destination.  Oh, that’s right!  The stamp!  I wonder what stamps cost these days.  I’ll do that tomorrow.  I hope she likes it, it’s my monogram in dark colors against a cream stationary.  I said everything that I want to say to her about the evening we spent together.  I hope that she receives it and likes it.  Oh wow.  Did I sign it?  I already sealed the envelope.  I’m sure I signed it, I was there when I was writing.  I’m sure of it.  It is finished.”

So, what is saved forever and what is deleted.  What holds and endures attention and what is dismissed in the midst of what is so much dismissible.

A lost art or just a loving art that’s been misplaced…at least for the moment?

About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). Six books on the Catholic church and U.S. culture are available on
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