Part voyeurism. Part confessional. Part archive. Part encyclopedia.
Whether love letters are penned on paper, rambled in emails, scrawled on postcards, or thumbed into a text message -- letters are sacred. They are maps of feelings and moments that, even in their specificity, become universal. We have all sent one: to each other, to the places we are from, live in, and go to, maybe even to ourselves. This project aims to do just a little of that, archive our moments of love in all their messy and unusual glory.
Arianne Shaffer - Love Letters to a Friend Founder and Curator
While working as a chaplain at a Montreal hospital, I came to realize the true radical nature of love stories. My first patient, a 93-year-old woman from Guatemala, recounted the loves and turmoils of her life. Her greatest love, however, had been for her country. As she was dying, she called out for home... a longing of mythic proportions. She also told me of loves lost and expressly told me never to trust a man who cannot cook you an entire fish. Part of her reality became mine, the gift of love shared.
In some ways, all of my jobs have been about love and listening. I have worked as an interfaith educator, documentary producer, freelance consultant, facilitator of dialogue and conflict transformation, cook, wedding officiant, and storyteller.
With Love Letters to a Friend, I am doing what my first patient inspired me to do -- to archive love.
All featured photographs on the site, (save for the one on this page) are by, and courtesy of, the photographer with the incandescent eyes for beauty, Sadaf Cameron. www.sadafcameron.com
Love Letters to a Friend was made possible by a gift from the Kindle Project LLC in 2009. Without these wonderful people, creative whims like mine would not have had a chance to flourish. Since 2010 I have had a great fortune to work with Kindle Project.
The patient, generous genius of my friends at K&Co. without whom this project would have not happened.
Love Letters to a Friend is dedicated to the people who have taught me the most about love: the hundreds of anonymous love letters writers who entrusted me with their cherished letters and to: n.k, n.j.r, s.c, c.c, l.m, a.k, m.s - a series of initials of people from whom this project was born. Infinite thanks...