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Nine Santa Cruz authors participated in The Love Letters Project on Saturday, February 11th, held at The Musuem of Art and History (MAH), Bookshop Santa Cruz, and Felix Kulpa Gallery. Each writer was asked to contribute a poem or letter they had written for someone or something they love. The poems and letters written by Erin Johnson at The Love Letters Project follow her contribution.

A Lonely Narcissist's Excuse

I can’t seem to fall into the right kind of love.
Maybe because the world already has
Too much romantic poetry,
And I would tip the scale of words like:
“Warm”, and “Happy”, and “Beautiful Glow”.
And something terrible would happen.
Like Gail and Eugene, two happily married golfers,
Would abruptly call it quits after 35 years of marriage
In order to produce a counterweight of “Dulled”, and
“Dissatisfied”, and
“Plaid socks”.
I imagine I’d write things like “Awakening” too,
And maybe “Labyrinthine Limbs”, or just “Entwined.”
So really,
Perhaps the world is better off.
Though I long for bright moments
To press between pages like petals,
And though I do yearn to be filling the lines of my journal
With an awed mish-mash of clichés,
It gives me great comfort to think of Gail and Eugene,
Who never write,
But often do the crossword together over breakfast.

By Erin Johnson

View the Love Letters Photo Gallery
Erin's Photo

Photograpy by Marcia Quackenbush

Letters & Poems written by Erin for the Love Letters Project:

Erin Johnson Photo

“ Fool,” said my Muse to me, “look in thy heart, and write.”* Erin Johnson is an avid sigh-er at the Austen and Shakespearean lexicons, and owns both volumes of the letters between Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning. She has a BA in Literature from the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara, once spent a summer swooning over Renaissance Literature at St. Catherine's in Cambridge, England, and has been known to write a great deal of love poetry (mostly addressed to people who don't exist). Her current favorite love letter of all time is the one written by Captain Wentworth in the closing chapters of Persuasion, she suggests that everyone read it.

  * Sir Phillip Sydney


Winter 2012 Issue

Wallace Baine
Don Rothman
Karen Ackland

Carolyn Burke
Farnaz Fatemi
Gary Young

Clifford Henderson
Micah Perks
Paul Skenazy

Julia Chiapella

Love Letters Project
Wallace Baine
Lauren Crux
Stephanie Golino
Neal Hellman
Cheyenne Street Houck
Erin Johnson
Wincy Lui
Elizabeth McKenzie
Alyssa Young

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