The letter is an act of faith.

The telephone conversation is, by its very nature, reactive, not reflective. Immediacy is its prime virtue. The immediacy delivers quick company, instant stimulation; the stimulation is cathartic; catharsis pushes back anxiety; into open space flows the kind of thought generated by electric return.

The letter, written in absorbed solitude, is an act of faith; it assumes the presence of humanity; world and self are generated from within; loneliness is courted, not feared. To write a letter is to be alone with my thoughts in the conjured presence of another person. I keep myself imaginative company. I occupy the empty room. I alone infuse the silence.

–Vivian Gornick

8 thoughts on “The letter is an act of faith.

  1. Almost all my family lives 1500 miles away and I used to write long letters quite regularly. My parents are gone now and my sisters and I keep in contact by phone or e mail. Hardly any letters are written any more. In any case, my hands are not up to much writing any more.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gretchen Joanna,
    Thank you so much for your kind comment on my blog! It was a brightener to my day! I am always holding out hope that I will find time to keep blogging. I write posts in my head often and yet… when to get them onto the screen!? God bless you too!

    This quote is a beautiful one! Thank you for sharing. I wrote letters to people copiously as a child — I still love to get and receive letters — however rarely it happens! What an art letter writing is, but I had never thought of it as an “act of faith”!

    Liked by 1 person

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