Wednesday, April 30, 2014


Valeria, ya aziza

I conquer the world with words,
conquer the mother tongue,
verbs, nouns, syntax.
I sweep away the beginning of things
and with a new language
that has the music of water the message of fire
I light the coming age
and stop time in your eyes
and wipe away the line
that separates
time from this single moment.


نزار توفيق قباني‎

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Dear Valeria,

When I was twenty I thought that life came to a point in some openly dramatic way (like in the movies) and somehow you got into adulthood at some point and then you were set, on a plateau that went on forever and ever. Remember the contralto in Pirates of Penzance, accused of being old and of having wrinkles and gray hair? And she defends herself by saying (singing, rather), "They gradually got so." When I was twenty-five and sang in the chorus, my mother laughed and laughed at that line and I wondered why.

All my best,

Joanna Russ

Monday, April 28, 2014


Dear Valeria,

In dream he whisper'd it all back to me,
Vox all a-velvet and reeking:
Liberate vostut ex inferis!
I chok'd on fear o' what I couldn't see;
Gothic mercantile type who's seeking
Mutinense simplex et eboris.

Yours sincerely,

Georges Reynolds

Sunday, April 27, 2014


Dear Valeria,

For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable; my interest has been to convince you that you must assume responsibility for being here, in this marvelous world, in this marvelous desert, in this marvelous time. I want to convince you that you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while, in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it.


Carlos Castañeda

Saturday, April 26, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I wasn't naked, I was completely covered by a blue spotlight.

Yours most sincerely,

Gypsy Rose Lee

Friday, April 25, 2014


Dear Valeria,

The time having come, Mademoiselle, when the stern laws of men no longer bar women from devoting themselves to the sciences and disciplines, it seems to me that those who are able ought to employ this honorable liberty, which our sex formerly desired so much, in studying these things and show men the wrong they have done us in depriving us of the benefit and the honor which might have come to us. And if anyone reaches the stage at which she is able to put her ideas into writing, she should do it with much thought and should not scorn the glory, but adorn herself with this rather than with chains, rings, and sumptuous clothes, which we are not really able to regard as ours except by custom. But the honor which knowledge will bring us cannot be taken from us - not by the cunning of a thief, not by the violence of enemies, not by the duration of time.1

Very warmest regards

Louise Labé

Thursday, April 24, 2014


My dear Valeria,

If a star comes loose
and falls white through the air,
then, it is said, she answers our prayers, that reach
that short glimmering path.

I wait and wait. It is April,
a warm and sharp-eared night in April,
when the grass grows and the stars listen -
tonight they go so peacefully their way,
and not one trips and falls! 

But if I fall asleep, it matters not at all:
if a star tears itself loose tonight,
then she must feel my prayer, where she descends,
even though I sleep -
for all the silent, silent night
all of wide, wide space
is completely full of my only wish!

All the best,

Karin Boye

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Querida Valeria,

Memories do not change, and change is the law of existence. If our dead, the closest, the most beloved, were to return to us after a long absence and instead of the old, familiar trees were to find in our souls English gardens and stone walls -- that is to say, other loves, other tastes, other interests, they would gaze upon us sadly and tenderly for a moment, wiping away their tears, and then return to their tombs to rest.

Un abrazo muy fuerte,

Teresa de la Parra

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Querida Valeria,

La pluma es la lengua del alma: cuales fueren los conceptos que en ella se engendraren, tales serán sus escritos.

Con saludos cordiales,

Miguel de Cervantes

Monday, April 21, 2014


Chère Valeria,

Philosophy is possible only because the material ensemble called “man” is endowed with very sophisticated software. But also, this software, human language, is dependent on the condition of the hardware. Now: the hardware will be consumed in the solar explosion, taking philosophical thought with it (along with all other thought) as it goes up in flames. So the problem of the technological sciences can be states as follows: how can we provide this software with a hardware that is independent of the conditions of life on earth? That is: how can we make thought without a body possible?


Jean-François Lyotard

Sunday, April 20, 2014


Dear Valeria,

Greatness is not measured by what a man or woman accomplishes, but by the opposition he or she has overcome to reach his goals.

Big hug,

Dorothy Height

Saturday, April 19, 2014


Dear Valeria,

The bourgeois novel is the greatest enemy of truth and honesty that was ever invented. It's a vast, sentimentalizing structure that reassures the reader, and at every point, offers the comfort of secure moral frameworks and recognizable characters. This whole notion was advanced by Mary McCarthy and many others years ago, that the main function of the novel was to carry out a kind of moral criticism of life. But the writer has no business making moral judgments or trying to set himself up as a one-man or one-woman magistrate's court. I think it's far better, as Burroughs did and I've tried to do in my small way, to tell the truth.


J.G. Ballard

Friday, April 18, 2014


Dear Valeria, 

The monster which is shown in the figure appeared in Buenos Aires on August 26. The contrast of three resemblances which it had, that of a child, a horse, and a calf, surprised all who saw it. I asked the person who showed it to me if I could examine it in order to describe it faithfully, but he never allowed me to do this. I examined it from quite close and drew its principal traits without his noticing. As soon as I returned to my room, having all the information about the monster vividly in my memory, it furnished what was missing from the drawing. I completed it and represented it in its natural color.


Louis Feuilée

Thursday, April 17, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I dare to think that it is this outsized reality, and not just its literary expression, that has deserved the attention of the Swedish Academy of Letters. A reality not of paper, but one that lives within us and determines each instant of our countless daily deaths, and that nourishes a source of insatiable creativity, full of sorrow and beauty, of which this roving and nostalgic Colombian is but one cipher more, singled out by fortune. Poets and beggars, musicians and prophets, warriors and scoundrels, all creatures of that unbridled reality, we have had to ask but little of imagination, for our crucial problem has been a lack of conventional means to render our lives believable. This, my friends, is the crux of our solitude.

Best regards,

Gabriel García Márquez


Ma chère Valeria,

Ah ! comme vous dites, il faut glisser sur bien des pensées, et ne faire pas semblant de les voir.

A bientôt,

Marie de Rabutin-Chantal, marquise de Sévigné

Wednesday, April 16, 2014



Maybe vagueness has been good for me. The word means two different things in Tokyo and Osaka, you know. In Tokyo it means stupidity, but in Osaka they talk about vagueness in a painting and in a game of Go.

Best wishes

Yasunari Kawabata

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I enjoyed my life when I had nothing... and kinda like the idea of just being happy with me.


Joey Ramone

Monday, April 14, 2014


Mia cara Valeria,

Se un bambino scrive nel suo quaderno «l'ago di Garda», ho la scelta tra correggere l'errore con un segnaccio rosso o blu, o seguirne l'ardito suggerimento e scrivere la storia e la geografia di questo «ago» importantissimo, segnato anche nella carta d'Italia.
[…] Un «libbro» con due b sarà soltanto un libro più pesante degli altri, o un libro sbagliato, o un libro specialissimo?

I miei ossequi,

Gianni Rodari

Sunday, April 13, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I am sometimes very dissatisfied with my life here. I do want to accomplish something, so badly. There are so many things that I could do if I only had the money. And when I think that I might be teaching and making money, and still all the time improving myself it makes me feel unhappy and as if I were not doing all that I can.

Best regards,

Annie Jump Cannon

Saturday, April 12, 2014


Dear Valeria,

When I go up there, which is my intention, the Big Judge will say to me, Where are your wounds? and if I say I haven’t any, he will say, Was there nothing to fight for? I couldn’t face that question.


Alan Paton

Friday, April 11, 2014


Dear Valeria,

In making my first appearance before the public, who have treated me well — in fact I may say I am as comfortable now as I was uncomfortable before.

I am Yours Truly,

Joseph Merrick

Thursday, April 10, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I was so arrogant to believe that the film-makers would follow my book very very closely, as for the script, I was like 'Is this my story?', but it's a matter of knowing and seeing the point of view of the film-makers. I was coming from a writer's perspective so I had to shift a little too to realise how the book makes a good film, makes a good story. Also, I was script consultant so I was there to see that no indigenous culture was breached and see that they respected the Aboriginal people's express wishes. When I asked my mother for permission to write the book she said, 'Yes, you can write the book, tell the story but don't talk about forbidden subjects.'

Best regards,

Doris Pilkington Garimara

Dante Gabriel

Dear Valeria,

From this wave-wash'd mound
Unto the furthest flood-brim look with me;
Then reach on with thy thought till it be drown'd.
Miles and miles distant though the last line be,
And though thy soul sail leagues and leagues beyond,—
Still, leagues beyond those leagues, there is more sea.


Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


Dear Valeria,

My mind is calm, for my fortune is not my felicity. I know I have clean hands and a clean heart, and I hope a clean house for friends or servants; but Job himself, or whoever was the justest judge, by such hunting for matters against him as hath been used against me, may for a time seem foul, especially in a time when greatness is the mark and accusation is the game.


Sir Francis Bacon

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Erik Axel

Dear Valeria,

It whispers; all is waiting here
Kept safe for thee, year after year,
Beautiful songs in thousands;
Where hast thou been, where, where?

All the best,

Erik Axel Karlfeldt

Monday, April 7, 2014


Dear Valeria,

Invisible things are the only realities; invisible things alone are the things that shall remain.


William Godwin

Sunday, April 6, 2014


Dear Oualeria,

I wrote that many things that were thought to have been discovered in modern times had been known to Hippocrates two thousand years earlier. I defended my ancestors' honour, I spoke up for my coun­try, my friends, my cantor, and everybody on the examining board was pleased.

Kall' imera!

Ἀδαμάντιος Κοραῆς

Saturday, April 5, 2014


Dear Valeria,

I am a phoenix who runs after arsonists.


Saul Bellow

Friday, April 4, 2014

Catherine Lucille

Dear Valeria,

She was unbinding her turban...
He watched, not breathing, a presentiment of something horrible stirring in his brain, inexplicably... The red folds loosened and — he knew then that he had not dreamed — again a scarlet lock swung down against her cheek... a hair, was it? A lock of hair?... thick as a thick worm it fell, plumply, against that smooth cheek... more scarlet than blood and thick as a crawling worm... and like a worm it crawled.


C.L. Moore

Thursday, April 3, 2014


Dear Valeria,

When you control a man's thinking you do not have to worry about his actions. You do not have to tell him not to stand here or go yonder. He will find his "proper place" and will stay in it. You do not need to send him to the back door. He will go without being told. In fact, if there is no back door, he will cut one for his special benefit. His education makes it necessary.

Very best regards,

Carter Godwin Woodson

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Dear Valeria,

That the witch remained invisible, added not a little to the superstitious dread in which she was held. Her child, however, was regarded by the neighbors with mingled sympathy and admiration. They could not understand how she kept her red cheeks and laughing eyes amid such depressing surroundings; they must say, that any one who had at his baptism renounced the devil and all his works, could hardly bring himself to marry a girl out of this haunted house. Yet they watched the graceful little figure as long as they could see her hat-ribbon wave in the wind, and her short skirt blow about her trim ankles.

Kindest regards,

Paul Heyse

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


Dear Valeria,

He grinned at her, and she grinned at him, and it seemed to Maria that suddenly the sun came out.

Best regards,

Elizabeth Goudge