Sitting at work yesterday, beavering away, when the mail lady comes in. I get the occasional piece of mail at work so wasn’t surprised when she held out an envelope to me.
What was surprising about this piece of overseas post was that it had found me at all.
The envelope was addressed to me at “Piwakawaka Press, Tauranga, New Zealand”. Piwakawaka Press, which published breath in 2011, exists only in one room of my house and in my head. So there is no PO Box number or street address to be found, there is no phone number.
Goodness knows where it had gone, but it had gone somewhere in Tauranga because written on the envelope in another hand in red pen was “try BOP Times”. And there it found me. (I would like to thank NZ Post, often derided for its rapidly reducing services, for even giving delivery a go.)
With no return address, I had no way of knowing who the letter might be from until I opened it.
And I’ve realised as I’ve read and re-read this letter, and told of its extraordinary delivery, that I miss letters. I miss the excitement of opening the envelope, unfolding the paper inside and reading the words someone has addressed entirely to me.
I’m not going to say who this letter is from, or even which country it has come from, but I will say that it has come from someone who, until yesterday morning, was a complete stranger to me, whose haiku I admire greatly and whose reaching out in this entirely unexpected way fills my heart with joy.
I shall be writing back.