There was a debate in the Tennessee Legislature this winter as to whether to mandate cursive writing in the state’s elementary schools. I’m a cursive fan but supporting such legislation could cast me as a relic, a throw-back, a proponent of horse-and-buggy thinking. Opposition, on the other hand, could result in hate mail written in superb penmanship. Taking sides on such a hot issue is risky. Nonetheless, I’m a cursive fan.
In fact, I long for things written by hand, cursive preferred but print is acceptable. I look forward to a letters that were held by the writer, mistakes evident, hastily penned or elegantly presented, a reflection of the sender, torn, bent-cornered, coffee stained, tear stained, something expressing the moment, the news, the request, crafted with imperfections, folded, placed in an envelope and mailed with the realization that it will be days until the reader absorbs the message.
I like holding the things that people I care about once held. Both my parents had excellent hand writing. Their letters, notes, and even their names written in an old book remain momentary reflections of their lives. Digital communcation dominates today. But a filed email will never match a hand written letter stuffed in a drawer and stumbled over when looking for something else.