Letter in a Drawer


Letter in a Drawer


Into what impossible role have I forced you?

A creation of my own desires,

Unknown to you, unprovoked by you,

Existing only in my fantasy - unreal -

But not necessarily unsatisfying.

That so small a moment could evoke

So great a regard

So fervent a need

Is not your responsibility;

You did not seduce with vacuities

Too quickly reduced to rubbish.

I don’t know that you realize

What you have done,

Or even that you care.

If you can expound cause and effect

You do not understand at all.

And so, My Love,

I contemplate the scratchings and cacklings

Of presumptive opinion.

I love you.

It is enough

That I say what I know.


Cynthia Buell Thomas


◄ A Wonderful Day

The Christmas Tree ►


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Lisa Milligan

Sun 21st Mar 2010 21:27

You have captured here what happens to so many of us...I have lived in that place. You have the acknowledgement that the feelings are fantasy and your own, that he doesn't even know (which always causes me such frustration)...the stellar line is "But not necessarily unsatisfying." So much honesty and sincerity in that line. And the last 3 lines...that's the truth and the reality. There's comfort in knowing I'm not the only one that can get caught up in everything you've described in this piece. Love it.


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Cate Greenlees

Sun 13th Dec 2009 19:00

Just come across this Cynthia, it`s a clever one . It can be taken two ways depending on who owns the letter in the drawer. The fact that it is open to interpretation makes it compulsive reading!
Cate xx

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Sat 12th Dec 2009 10:30

So wish I'd come to this one earlier and not now when I have everyone to get ready for everything...cos now I'm hunting for words when I should be hunting for ballet shoes.
To me your poem sums up the randomness and the lack of control that love can bring with it - probably not the best choice of words, but I'm pushed. Like a meteorite - when it hits, it hits and the fallout can be massive. There is no explaining it and the one that inspires it hasn't always asked for it. Love complicates things. The letter is like a ticking bomb. I like the poem cos it leaves a lot up to the reader - something I've never been good at... An enjoyable read.

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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Sat 12th Dec 2009 10:10

Thank you all for your comments. The 'I' is gender indifferent, of course. I took great care with that detail.

If it's possible to interpret one's own writing, I think the greatest elements in this are 'compulsion' and 'secrecy'. The 'lover' is keeping the intensity of the attraction very close; but I'm sure the 'vibes' must be somewhat mutual or the capitulation would not be so complete. The writer is no fool. Writing the letter may involve risk. Secrecy by nature implies a 'victim'. The question is: in whose drawer lies the letter?

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sian howell

Fri 11th Dec 2009 19:26

yes I enjoyed reading this a few times like darren to fully absorb the piece. I particularly liked the ending which seems to take control of the situation and say "look, I know that I love you...all of this other 'stuff' is just superficial " Oh by the way re: Alpha Male yes I paint wolves actually and work as an artist in Glastonbury. I too have an interset in Native Americans - their plight today and their fascinating history and culture. Sian X

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John Aikman

Thu 10th Dec 2009 21:34

'I contemplate the scratchings and cacklings'

I am considering 'appropriating' that line with the expedient of adding an 'r'.

The 'scratchings and cracklings'...add a 'cooked pig's bum' motif that I find irresistible. I don't think it could be regarded as 'plagiarism'....just a referential nod in the direction of a greater talent.

: )


<Deleted User> (7164)

Thu 10th Dec 2009 20:24

Came back to this to view other comments.For me, this poem can be interpreted in two ways.1. as Ann interpreted it, as a fantasy lover.2. as i originally thought, a poem which has been stuffed in a drawer to be found and still loved by the author. That would explain Ann's confusion about scratchings and cacklings of presumptive opinion. (critique and comments) ?
Incidentally, i love that line too Cynthia. I like the way it rolls around the tongue when emphasis is placed on ''not necessarily.''


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Andy N

Thu 10th Dec 2009 13:36

enjoyed this cynthia.. nice stuff indeed..

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Ann Foxglove

Thu 10th Dec 2009 13:25

I expect I have the wrong end of the stick but, for me (I love that phrase cos I can just say how I see it even tho that may be wrong!) the "but not necessarily unsatisfying" means the pleasure you can get from a fantasy, and I see this could be a reference to physical pleasure. The way I see it is that the woman fancies the man and has built up a secret fantasy life around him. He doesn't know, is ignorant and innocent. Then he finds out. He's a sort of victim of her secret fantasy love. But that's just how it reads to me. Would like to know if I have misread it, Cynthia.

darren thomas

Wed 9th Dec 2009 15:13

Very smooth and measured, Cynthia. Although the clause "But not necessarily unsatisfying" confuses me, whereas 'Ann' just loves the line. I'm not sure if it's meant to be confusing or I'm reading too much into the adverbial and the negated adjectival particle?

I've read it a dozen times now and it makes some sense. It may be the conjunction 'but' that muddied my waters - I took the liberty of inserting 'yet' instead of 'but' when I read it and this didn't appear to alter the meaning but made sense to me. I'll shut up.

Either way - I enjoyed it!

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John Aikman

Wed 9th Dec 2009 13:25

Another cracker C. You must have superb editorial skills...you never post a poor one!

For me...'If you can expound cause and effect, you do not understand at all' has particular resonance...and the last three lines...just, Wow!

Thank you.


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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Wed 9th Dec 2009 13:06

Ann, never saw it; thanks much. That made a nasty bump on the log. Don't know where the 's' went. Corrected to 'Is'. Also, 'scratchings and cacklings' are 'Writing and talking' ad infinitum about 'what love is', always in the subjective mode naturally.
Thanks, too, Starlight.

<Deleted User> (7164)

Tue 8th Dec 2009 20:40

I can identify with this too and i think i know where you're coming from.
Very well expressed.


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Ann Foxglove

Tue 8th Dec 2009 17:09

I can identify with this Cynthia, and it reminds me of my Eyelash poem. I just love the line "but not necessarily unsatisfying"! I don't understand what the scratchings and cacklings of prsumptive opinion are, the rest I love. But in line 9 did you mean to put I'm not rather than I not?

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