writing a few reminders
on a store catalog I intend to bring with me today — will see if I can get out of the house — a letter of my childhood springs up. It must exist. Somewhere. Besides my memory. But if only there, I am grateful, since its memory tags along with another — probably the only advice I recall from my grandmother Carmen.
and I did not follow it
We moved to the states in batches. Shipped to my grandparent’s house. One of my brothers and I came first, we were eleven and twelve. Our father came last — but he wrote me a letter. He wrote it on black paper and sent it in a black envelope. See, I just wrote on a black background in a catalog with a silver pen I happened to have on the kitchen counter among a trove of colored pens. My father was an architect at heart, among many other things, and his handwriting, which I had never seen until that letter, was neat in every sense of the word. ALL CAPS. Very angular, his As, Ms, and Ws astounded me.
every now + then, i take to writing them that way
I always have had, besides for writing instruments and paper, a love for aesthetics. And color. And symmetry. Even as a child. I also loved that letter because he made drawings of our younger sister and brother, who were to come next, and because
- he sent it to me
- it was sent by a Dad who, to me, was MIA a lot
- it was beautiful
my grandmother, his mom, stood beside me
looking at the letter, and said: “Treasure this, it is very special.” Then sighed.