Friday, March 6, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things: Old Letters and Postcards

Letters and postcards are such a thing of the past, that I find it refreshing to come across old correspondence tucked in a drawer or in the cover of an old book.

Does anyone remember the Griffin and Sabine books by Nick Bantock? He wrote a love/friendship story using only the couple's correspondence. It's beautiful to read if you've never read the series. You turn the pages and one by one each page has a pasted letter, an envelope with one inside, or a postcard stamped "Air Mail Par Avion." It's clever of the writer, but truly effective because the text is so engaging and on the adjacent page the art is gorgeous (Bantock is also the illustrator). 

My daughter-in-law from Singapore shared the series with me and I'm so glad she did. Check out the opening lines (Griffin is in London and Sabine is in the Simon Islands, South Pacific):

Postcard 1:

Griffin Moss, 
 It's good to get to touch
with you at last.
Could I have one of your 
fish postcards?
I think you were right--
the wine glass has more impact
than the cup.

Sabine Strohem

Post card 2:

Thank you for your exotic

postcard. Forgive me if
it's a memory lapse on my
part. But should I know
I can't fathom out how you
were aware of my first
broken cup sketch for this
card. I don't remember
showing it to anyone.
Please enlighten me.

Griffin Moss

Anyway, was looking for something to post, and thought of this old favorite. Here's the full title:
Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence by Nick Bantock (1991, 1992, 1993 Chronicle Books)

Have a Nice Weekend Everyone!


  1. Sharon, that sounds truly lovely. In a way it reminds me of the letter exchanges between Kahlil Gibran and a woman in England.

    I love cards and postcards and keep mine to use on various projects.

    I like the new blog look. (I will miss the top color. smile.)

  2. I haven't read that series, but it sounds beautiful. The two postcards you included are intriguing. I'll have to look them up. Have a great weekend!

  3. That reminds me, during college a college friend sent me post cards from the study abroad/walk through Europe program. I wish I can show the post cards as I still have them.

  4. --I like the comparison Dixie. I remember reading that in college.

    --Hi Lori, I hope you get a chance to read it!

    --Lidy: Oh, but you can. I scanned some postcards on my site awhile back. It was so much fun to share.

  5. I think these correspondence novels have a name, like epistolery or something. Maybe that's just journal ones. It's lovely that you found something that speaks to you. Congrats on the new blog look! Spring is always a good time to start something new. :)

  6. This is lovely actually considering nobody writes an actual letter any more

  7. Lexa - Now that's a new word for me...epistolery. Thanks...wanted a brighter look and easier to read text.

    Birgit - It really is and I often miss this old form. It just took more time to do, something we all seem to lack these days, or is it we all do so much more?

  8. I don't know that one. But it looks like fun. When I was travelling I communicated with home via email. But I liked sending postcards from each place as well. There's something nice about it!


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You could call me an eternal optimist, but I'm really just a dreamer. l believe in dream fulfillment, because 'sometimes' dreams come true. This is a blog about my journey as a writer and things that inspire and motivate me.