Saturday, June 25, 2005

The Brownings

It seems slightly crazy (in the best possible way) that Robert Browning began his introductory letter to Elizabeth Barrett Browning like this:
I do, as I say, love these books with all my heart -- and I love you too.

I wish I'd had time to read all of their letters and in their proper order, but because I didn't I scanned the pages impatiently for anything that looked particularly dramatic and promising, and discovered that by page 38 they were both calling one another "dearest" and unabashedly proclaiming their love. I sort of wish I had known about the Brownings when I was 14, because it would've been nice to have known that such a relationship had existed and could exist, that it was possible to have creative collaboration and (for girls who wanted to be writers to have) happy endings. Maybe if I had, I wouldn't have wasted quite so much time sunk in stupid fantasies about being Ted and Sylvia.