This is my first writing about my project now, a beginning of sharing with you the progress of this work, some discoveries, and thoughts and feelings I cannot predict, but I can share with you a very personal gift the correspondence has already given me. Two thousand pieces of printed letters,in an old fashioned way, in pencil, in pen, on envelopes, on home made stationary with all our symbiotics--paired axes, intertwined women's bodies, double women gender signs, in inks of all colors. Then this, its reference number, 1980--12--098. The year, 1980, the month December, the first part typed.
I'm desperately trying to finish this rewrite by the new year. I
just retyped this page and I'm sending it to you because I thought
of you when I did it, and how often we seem to be at crossed swords
which are not real, because we both are survivors. I wish we did
not only communicate when there's a function or a problem, but I
guess that's a piece of the lives we live.
The last time I saw you you said you'd send me some of your writing
but you never did. Is that because of too-busy or is there something else?
Anyway, it was nice and unexpected to find you coming up in this
obsessive undertaking I'm doing here, kind of like a little visit. That's
from my heart, Joan. May this new year be a healthy fruitful one for
you and for Deb, and for all those you love.
[In pencil] In the hand of Afrekete,
I have no memory of ever seeing this letter, perhaps it was enclosed in the monthly LHA mail and so it never reached me but yesterday it did, reached me to the depths of my heart. I said to my two younger friends, Maddy and Sam, visiting today with tears rolling down my face, never turn away from the offer of comradeship, no matter how unworthy you may feel, I let my aching body rest in the hands of Afrekete, I let the sword drop, something I should have done a long time ago--dear Audre, from my heart, let us be in each other's presences now, a little visit, dear fierce gentle woman poet warrior.