By Hand

The envelope landed like a soft cushion on the doorstep, its belly slightly bulging with the contents, as though it meant to spill out at the earliest opportunity. I knew the writing so well; a lifetime of correspondence that age and experience did nothing to alter.

Reading the words that lay on the pages between us, I laughed and recoiled a little at my exaggerated tone as I described life’s daily adventures in detail from my teenage perspective. My cousin discovered the conversations whilst clearing their family home of over forty years, a moment that the wider family felt almost as much as their core gathering. She knew it was time to part from the objects of their union and so my pages arrived safely home, more than twenty years after they left.

Growing up in a family who wrote regularly, I awaited news from others and longed for the intimacy of their unique hands; the words cultivated for my own eyes to articulate their voices with resounding clarity. In response, I marked a reply designed to speak honestly, the response rolling in lively thought and observation.

I am a keeper of letters and the hands of those who still write are very much appreciated. It is the familiar step of my mother’s elegant cursive that I miss most on the special days. Her ability to work wisdom skilfully into prose that stands the test of time, continues to captivate my interest and resonate increasingly as life offers more experience.

Last week, my first hand written card range and gift package were uploaded with orders arriving the same afternoon. A personalised message captured in ink rests until the shapes sit still against the page. I take time to seal the envelope and imagine the curiosity as it lands on another doorstep, bearing sentiments conveyed by hand.