Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Donne on Letter Writing

To Sir Thomas Lucy

9 October 1607

I make account that the writing of letters, when it is with any seriousness, is a kind of ecstasy, and a departure and secession and suspension of the soul, which doth then communicate itself to two bodies: and as I would every day provide for my soul's last convoy, though I know not when I shall die, and perchance I shall never die; so for these ectasies in letters, I oftentimes deliver my self over in writing when I know not when those letters shall be sent to you, and many times they never are, for I have a little satisfaction in seeing a letter written to you upon my table, though I meet no opportunity of sending it. . . .

-from Poets Through Their Letters: Volume 1 by Martin Seymour-Smith (London: Constable, 1969) p. 100.

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