Letter by Letter by Bill Meissner

September returns. Students return to school and their letters, while the Jewish High Holidays (or literally translated, the “Days of Awe”) approach. In Bill Meissner’s poem, “Letter by Letter,” the themes of learning, forsaken ambitions, disappointment and regret, the passing of time, and the sorrow of contrition, converge with a sprinkle of hope that things are, nevertheless, somehow all right. This is a poem that for me perfectly captures the paradoxical joy-grief of September, a season that poignantly reminds me that things pass away, thereby heightening my awareness that life is beautiful.

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