Oslo in the fall + thoughts on Hemingway and the power of IMAGINATION

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It's cold outside, but it's a nice kind of cold. 

It's the kind that greets you with a smile. 

It's grey outside, but it's a pleasant kind of "grey"

It's melancholic, but in a beautiful way. 

Then theres the city,

the place that's filled with fear and expectations.

Highs and lows. 

Lot's of love and lot's of dissapointment. All at once. 

It's always crowded, always allert, yet, you're lonely.

Alone in the crowd. 

I'ts a sacrfice you'll have to make when moving here. 

In the mids of all the limelight and all the glory - you have no one 

No one but yourself and a book of Hemingway. 

But you don't really mind it. 

Because it's autumnm

the most beautiful season. 

with all it's colors -  

Ochre, red and oak-brown. 

The colors of a Rembrandt painting. 

It's beautifully melancholic. 

Just like Hemingway, and just like Oslo. 

And soon you'll figure out that you're not really alone. 

You have someone. 

Someone who'll stay by your side no matter what. 

Because the books gave birth to more than just cleverness:  

It gave birh to your IMAGINATION. 

A solitary trip to Oslo.

I’m reading Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises” – and I must say, it’s a good book for a big city. Reading it wasn’t half as pleasant in my hometown in Sweden, as it was here in Oslo.  The story is filled with detailed descriptions of lazy days in Paris, drinking, writing, meeting up with friends and drinking some more. By the sound of it, you’d think of it as a cheerful life, full of laughter and interesting conversations with artists and poets. You’d think the protagonist had nothing to worry about. But then, as the story evolves, you’ll think differently. Because a life in the city isn’t full of sunshine and glory. It’s bittersweet. Just like the autumn. In fact, the more I read, the more I was reminded of my own experiences of solitude. All of a sudden I was back to living in the city a year ago. I was back to sipping coffee or wine at a bar. Gazing at strangers. Wondering what their lives were like. Looking at couples holding hands and whispering silly little things into each other’s ears. Daydreaming. Imagining a better tomorrow.

Because I have been there too. I have felt loneliness. I have had an aching heart. I have gone to sleep alone, hoping, praying that maybe – just maybe tomorrow would be different. Maybe that friend would call me up or answer my latest texts about a possible meet-up.

But as much as I suffered, I also enjoyed it. I thought of silly things, just to make myself laugh. I walked in the park, collected yellow leaves and smiled at older people, who’d smile back and comment on the nice weather. I constantly romanticized mundane situations – I imagined meeting a stranger at a coffee-shop who would take away my loneliness and set my heart on fire. It never happened. But so what? It happened in my imagination. And that was enough. 

Hemingway said: ““Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know”.

Perhaps this is the reason why I feel there’s a big, dark, melancholic cloud over everything he writes; The more you know, the more you grieve. Ignorance is bliss. We all know this.

But it’s important to focus on one thing; That at least, you have your imagination. In the mids of all the dark and the lonesome, you can pick up a book or just let your mind go wild – for a little while. 

You can ride a sad train with Anna Karenina. 

You can experience a bullfight with Hemingway. 

You can go to New York with Holden Caulfield.

You can help a poor woman in need, together with Jean Valjean

You can go to Hogwarts and learn magic-tricks with Harry Potter 

This is something you’ve learned from reading, and you’ll learn it again when you try living alone in the city. Just like the autumn – it’s a love that has to grow on you. It takes time. 

Because I know it can be awful at times. 

I know it can feel like the whole world is against you. 

But it can also be wonderful! Believe me! 

You can walk alone down the crowded shopping-streets and wonder what happens next in “Les Miserables” by Viktor Hugo. You can relate to Hemingway’s existential problems in “The Sun Also Rises”. And you will no longer feel alone. The characters in the book you’re reading will be your company. And they’ll never leave your side. 

After all, Hemingway did have a point when he said; 

“All good books have one thing in common – they are truer than if they had really happened.”

So if you’re alone in the city and you’re experiencing an overwhelming amount of contradicting emotions – know what you’re blessed with. Get to know your imagination. You can get very surprised by what actually goes on inside your head. I know I was. 

(Ps: Also! If you live in Oslo and want a tip; Walk through the Royal Park while listening to THIS song by Richard Strauss. You won’t regret the experience!) 

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum 

 

 

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There is nothing more beautiful in the whole wide world as a girl in love with every breath she takes

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Think about it. 

That one time you met someone who seemed like she had it all figured out. 

You probably thought: She must've been born like that.

"She was meant to just know how to enjoy life." 

Well. Not really.

Whether you like to admit it or not - we all started from scratch.

The girl who seems like "she's got it all figured out", was once very insecure and lonely. 

She just realized one thing: that you need to work on it. 

And she worked on it. Every day. Without stopping.

Was it easy?

No. 

But was it worth it? 

Yes! 

Because the truth is: 

Every one of you is capable of anything. 

You have an infinite amount of power inside of you. 

You can turn your life around. 

You can wake up every morning with a smile. 

YOU can fall in love with every breath you take. 

Yes! YOU. 

YOU CAN DO THE IMPOSSIBLE. 

And you can do it today. 

But don't get me wrong - this is not a compliment. 

It's not a cliché.

It's not flattery. 

It's a fact. 

But what does it mean to “fall in love with yourself?”

Falling in love with yourself is the ability to make your unconsciousness become conscious. It’s knowing all your mental strengths and weaknesses. It’s having a clear picture of what goes on inside your mind every time you feel anxious, sad, rejected, exhausted or hurt. It’s analyzing how you react to things, noticing the patterns and mentally working out a way for a specific feeling not to happen again. I call it playing chess with yourself.

So what do you do when you play chess with yourself? 

First of all, you need a bit of side-information:

Psychologically, you and I are divided into two different personalities; The angel and the devil. You’ve probably seen this concept being played out in cartoons – two different voices are telling you two different things. One is always positive, the other, negative. Some people are very aware of these voices, but others don’t even know of their presence. BUT THEY ARE THERE. Trust me. There are angels and devils within all of us.

What are their roles? 

The angel always wants the best for you mentally. It gives you motivation, encourages you to go further and roots for you whenever there’s an obstacle along the way. Its voice sounds a lot like this: 

  • "You can do it! You're not there yet, but you will be if you keep moving forward."  
  • "You're not fit now, but if you maintain a healthy diet and go to the gym, you'll be where you want to be in no time!" 
  • "Okay. This was a bad day. Things didn't turn out the way you wanted them to. But tomorrow is a new day! And it's always dark before the dawn!"
    

The devil on the other hand always wants the worst for you. But be careful! Because it is usually very good at making negative thoughts seem like the most realistic outcome – it’s voice sounds a little bit like this:

  • "No. You don't have what it takes. Better quit now before you'll get even more disappointed."
  • "You're not fit because you never stick to anything. You never manage to keep something a habit. You're useless because you're lazy, and you'll never be able to be anything else." 
  • "This day was horrible. Better take some days off because you deserve it. You deserve it because you can't manage so many things happening all at once. Therefore, you'll never be able to smile every day. Because chaos is all around us." 

Notice the difference? 

Okay. You’ve come THIS far. You know how powerful each voice can be. You also know (because you know yourself) which one (of these voices) is dominating your every-day life. So … what now? You play chess. You find a way to beat the opposer on the other side of the chess-board (the devil). Notice its voice. What is it telling you? Who’s the devil and who’s the angel? Once you’ve identified both of them, you begin to eliminate the devil’s voice by repeating the angel’s voice to yourself again and again. “I can do it. I can do it. I can do it.” Then, you can continue by arguing for the angel’s voice, and against the devil’s: “Why can you do it? — because you’re awesome. You have done it before and you can do it again. You know what you’re capable of because you have an enormous amount of self-respect and integrity. Others have done it before. Why wouldn’t YOU be able to do it as well?” By doing this exercise, you’ll automatically make the devil fade away. You’ll no longer hear its voice. Time to call out; “Checkmate”! You have defeated your opposer. 

Then, the last step: You focus on bringing this exercise into your everyday life.  

Follow up on the process; Have conscious conversations with yourself every day – or every time you find yourself doubting something. Don’t stop. Because the minute you stop, you’re at risk of falling back into your old negative thinking-routine. Defeating the devil is something we all can do – simply by playing chess with ourselves. And the minute you know how to do that, you’ve become unstoppable. 

You’ve become “the girl who’s in love with every breath she takes”. 

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum 

The best and the worst book you’ll ever read

Get ready for frustration ...

THE COLLECTOR   by John Fowles

It's horrible, nerve-racking, intense and confusing. 

In the beginning, you hate the protagonist. 

Then you change your mind.

Then you hate him again. 

And in the end, you'll understand everything ...

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GENRE: Psychological thriller 

Dice (1-6): 6!

Why: It will challenge you – psychologically, and it’s perfect for a Halloween-read! 

PLOT: Unsociable, uneducated and unloved, Frederick collects butterflies and plays around with his camera. His life is nowhere near exciting and the man doesn’t have much to live for – except for one thing – his only purpose in life; To make Miranda fall in love with him. How does he do it? He buys a remote Sussex house, calmly abducts the girl of his dreams (Miranda) and puts her in a beautifully decorated cellar. Now, he hopes and prays that he will be able to keep her there for eternity. 

Does he manage to do it? 


Okay. You’ve read the plot. You’ve imagined the story. Now, the only question remains … 


Why is it the best and the worst book you’ll ever read?


There’s more to it than you may think. There’s a deep, underlying psychological reason to why the man does what he does. Some figure this out by themselves. Some have to do some research afterward. But, relax. I won’t spoil the fun for you. I will not reveal too much (maybe a little!)  I’ll just that … you’ll go through a multitude of emotions while reading this book. You’ll hate it, you’ll want to quit reading it, but you’ll have to continue anyway. You HAVE TO SEE what happens in the end. Your life will depend on it! 

So, to make it easier for you guys to understand the huge impact that this book has had on me (and others) … 

These are all the 10 emotions I went through while reading this book: 


“Okay. This man is a psycho. I get it. I won’t get surprised by anything. There are lots of these people in the world …”


“Wait … I don’t understand. Why? Why doesn’t he want to do anything to her? I thought he was a psycho. Hold on. He treats her like a queen. He spoils her! What is this behavior?” 


“Oh .. she’s actually having a nice time in there. This man is such a sweet-heart. He’s willing to do anything for her! Perhaps she can persuade him to release her and promise him that they’ll be boyfriend and girlfriend once she’s out? Yes, he would definitely fall for that. Oh yes! This is turning out well.”


“Hold on. He doesn’t want to let her out? Even if she swears to be his girlfriend?”


“Oh my lord. Oh no. He really is a psycho!” 


“Oh no. Things are getting out of hand. Oh no .. she NEEDS to get out now!”


“But … It’s not THAT bad. I mean … it could’ve been worse. He could’ve done nasty things to her, but he doesn’t. He’s reluctant to touch her. It actually could’ve been much worse! Perhaps she should try to get to know him better ….?”


“OH no. OH MY GOD! WHAT JUST HAPPENED? OH NO OH NO OH NO!!! I was wrong all along! He’s evil!!” 


“This is more than grotesque. I don’t have words for this behavior. I don’t have words for this book! What does all this mean? Do I even like this book? Wait, what?! What does this mean? ….”


“Okay. I see… I understand now.” 


 

Do you want to read the book now? 

Thought so … 

Get it —  HERE   (and you’ll get 50% off!) 

 

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum 

 

 

 

 

If there’s one thing Jordan Peterson has taught​ me about life, it’s this …

To be living the dream-life. 

What does it really mean? 

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Are you living your dream-life?

Answering this question can be hard. It can be really hard. We’re surrounded by people who give us tons of advice and inspiration, and, usually – we do things because other people say it’s the right thing to do. Just like that, we go about with our life – without even questioning our own opinions, values, and theories – we fall back into the mainstream. We wish for things we don’t really want. We think that all those fancy pictures we see on Instagram are things worth fighting for.


I want to be able to travel more.

I want a skinny body.

I want to live in a big villa in a southern country with a pool.

I want to have these clothes.

I want to be able to spend my money on anything, without
worrying about my economy at all.

I want more followers and likes on Instagram. 


 

If I’m not entirely wrong, most people think this when scrolling through Instagram every day. But is this really what you want? What is traveling? Is it going to a warm place, lying on the beach all day and taking lots of pictures and videos – just so that you can show all your friends how privileged you are? 

The Fourth Chapter of “12 Rules For Life” by Jordan Peterson is titled: “COMPARE YOURSELF TO WHO YOU WERE YESTERDAY, NOT TO WHO SOMEONE ELSE IS TODAY”.

What does this suggest? 

Stop looking at pictures of other people “living the dream-life” and start looking at your own actions instead. Think of yourself objectively. Scrutinize every action, every thought behind every word. Who were you yesterday? And who do you want to be? If you think about it, there’s always something you could have done better with the day before today. You probably could have done more, communicated something in a different way or treated someone a little bit nicer.

You could've thrown out the trash in the morning. 

You could've told the one you love how much you appreciate them.

You could've called that friend who really needs you right now. 

You could've not said those horrible words in that fight you had.

You could've worked those extra hours in the office.

You could've solved a problem that you should've solved months ago.

Okay. If you failed to do some of these things yesterday, why not do them today? Why not become a better person instantly? 

“You can only find out what you actually believe (rather than what you think you believe) by watching how you act. You simply don’t know what you believe, before that. You are too complex to understand yourself.”

-Jordan Peterson 

WATCH HOW YOU ACT.  It’s a more rational and direct way of saying (the cliché): Find yourself. 

Find out what you stand for. Look for the things that speak to you – “Encourage the serotonin to flow plentifully through the neural pathways desperate for its calming influence.” And most important of all, don’t seek to be happy. Seek to make something out of your life – seek to create. Do that thing that makes you look back at your life with pride. 

Jordan Peterson states: “Making happiness the focal point of your life, trivializes your experiences – because, in order to regard anything as truly important, you also have to regard its loss as truly meaningful. And that means that to open yourself up to experiences of meaning – also, simultaneously means you have to open yourself up to the possibility of deep hurt and sorrow.”

So … is it really that important to be happy all the time? Isn’t it more important to live a life that you’re proud of? To constantly compare yourself with who you were yesterday and to make necessary adjustments to how you choose to go about your day, every morning when you wake up? Doesn’t THAT sound like something worth fighting for? 

Because this is what I've figured out: 

You can throw away the dream of living a fancy Instagram-life. 

Because it's not a life worth fighting for. 

And it's not necessarily a life to be proud of. 

Instead, compare yourself to who you were yesterday.

Choose one (only one) person to look up to.

Recognize the patterns, notice the things that this person does and
the things that this person doesn't do. 

Aspire to be more and do more every day, like this person. 

Ask yourself: Traveling, skinny body, clothes, money - 
are these really the things that you want? 

Because, what is the dream-life? 

I'll tell you. 

The dream-life is working on something every day which will eventually
lead to great results. 

You're not living the dream-life if you're not creating something. 

You can choose to do anything. 

You are THAT strong. 

So choose to live the dream-life. 

Choose to create something. 

Because no one is ever going to do it for you.

 

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum 

 

Do you remember those days?

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Do you remember the days without smartphones? 

Do you remember the excitement; That rush of euphoria every time you came home from elementary school? You just couldn’t wait to open up your computer and check if you had a new message in your inbox. And whether it was myspace, email or just an innocent voicemail from him, it brought a smile to your face every time you were thinking about it. For an entire day of sitting by your desk at school, you had been waiting for this one moment – the moment that usually, would make your day. You were probably staring intensely at the clock, waiting, counting the minutes until you were allowed to go home. 

Or perhaps you (who’s reading this right now) were from an earlier generation. Perhaps you didn’t even have computers. Perhaps, the only time you got to talk to her or him, was when your mother allowed you to use the house phone, or when you had some spare pocket money so that you could go to town and dial the number you had been memorizing in your brain for so long. 

Do you remember those days? Do you? 

Do you sometimes look back? Do you ask yourself in the crack of dawn – do I even have anything to look forward to anymore? These days, kids walk around with their smartphones in their pockets. They no longer feel excited about coming home to check their inbox – because they already have. Many times. They didn’t have a childhood like me. And they never will – just like I never experienced the childhood of my parents – that time when they had to go into town and dial numbers in anticipation. I wish I would’ve been there, seen it, felt it. I’d probably run happily to the bus stop. I’d dance and sing and laugh in the rain. I would be more than thrilled to walk that extra mile and take that tedious bus – just so that I could sit in a phone-box and have a conversation with that special someone. Can the world really feel that real?

Yes. It can. But only if you start being real. 

Would you like to try? 

 

The best cafés/restaurants​/bars in Oslo, Stockholm, ​and Copenhagen!

Beware – The list that I’m about to make is only for people who are into old-fashioned places with vintage pieces of furniture, old books in bookshelves and live acoustic music playing in the background. Still in? 


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  1. Hotel Bristol bar/café 

Why: It’s the heart of Oslo; Sofas, stools and the atmosphere, in general, is taken directly out of a 1920s-film. Waiters are dressed in black and white suits. Afternoon-tee with Champagne is on the menu. There’s live piano music playing in the background by a professional pianist. What is not to love about this place? 

Dice (1-6): 6! 

Location: Kristian IVs gate 7, 0164 Oslo, Norway


2. Lorry Resturant 

Why: This restaurant is known for having no music at all. It’s dead quiet, which allows people to talk. Conversations are usually endless here, and if you’re with good company, you’ll most likely stay there for many hours. That’s the beauty with music-free zones; It opens up the possibility of an interesting discussion. It’s also very classical, focused on antique little details and overall – very old-school. 

Dice (1-6): 5

Location: Parkveien 12, 0350 Oslo, Norway


3. The Broker

 Why: If you’re like me – if you love pubs more than anything else – go to this place. It’s very British, very cozy and full of beautiful furniture. Here, you can buy everything of drinks and traditional British dishes. Perfect for a calm night out with friends, or book-clubs:)

Dice (1-6): 

Location:  Bogstadveien 27, 0355 Oslo, Norway

 


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  1. Greasy Spoon (The ultimate brunch-place!) 

Why: It’s the best recipe for a hangover. Go here after a long night out, or just a day you’re feeling a bit down. I promise – this café is the cure. They sell the most delicious breakfasts and brunches here. Anything you can possibly think of from blueberry-pancakes to poached eggs to avocado toasts and peanut-butter sandwiches. They have it all. They’re also famous for their mimosa and bloody merry – if you feel like spicing up the morning. I always make sure to visit this place everytime I’m in Stockholm, and so should you! And even though it’s not as old-fashioned as the places mentioned above, it’s still a good choice. Their food is mouth-watering! 

Dice (1-6): 6!

Locations: (there are two of them) 1. Tjärhovsgatan 19, 116 28 Stockholm

2. Hagagatan 4, 113 48 Stockholm


2.  Sturekatten 

Why: Words can’t describe how much I love this place! It’s very similar to “Bristol Hotel” – very old-fashioned, cozy and warm. Everything about this café is inspired by the 19th century; The structure of the house, the compact rooms, the warm, deep colors, the paintings on the walls, the cutlery, the plates … etc. If you want to go back in time just for an hour or two – go here. It’s magical. 

Dice (1-6): 6!

Location: Riddargatan 4, 114 35 Stockholm


3. Hermans (VEGAN)

Why: It’s the best vegan restaurant I’ve ever been to in my life! No kidding. All day, every day, they have a buffet of all the food they make. You, as a customer can buy one plate for a very cheap price and serve yourself as many portions as you’d like from their delicious food! Is’nt that great? The food is usually so tasty that you can’t get enough of it, and it’s all vegan! No animal products! Amazing. 

Dice (1-6): 5

Location: Fjällgatan 23B, 116 28 Stockholm

 


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  1. Central Hotel & Café 

 

Why: It’s the perfect reading-place! Go here one afternoon, buy yourself a coffee and just sit and read and enjoy the petite atmosphere that this little café represents! It’s cute, it’s comfortable, it’s small and narrow and the building is absolutely gorgeous. But – I would strongly advise you to book a table in advance. The place only has about five seats! 

Dice (1-6): 5

Location:  Tullinsgade 1, 1618 København, Denmark


2. Library Bar 

why: Do I even have to say anything …? THIS café/bar is a dream for any writer or reader. It’s filled with books from A to Z, it’s beautiful, everything is dark oak and you can sit there and drink with your friends and discuss poetry! How great! 

Dice (1-6): 6! 

Location: Bernstorffsgade 4, 1577 København, Denmark


3. Vinværten

Why: This is a wine-bar, which means that you can order any wine, taste it, drink as much as you like and they’ll charge you per dl. In other words – you can get many bottles to your table, but you don’t need to drink a whole bottle if you don’t want to. If you prefer to drink half, that’s fine, because they’ll only charge how much you choose to drink. Great isn’t it? Also, they have several great appetizers here. Everything from tapas to French cheeses to olives … I would say it’s the best place to go to if you want to celebrate something or give a nice treat to a friend:) Also … I love wine! 

Dice (1-6): 6! 

Location: Gothersgade 89, 1123 København, Denmark


 

I hope you enjoyed my little list of perfect coffee/food places to visit in Scandinavia. Do tell me if there’s anything you would recommend to me. I’d be so happy:)  

Insta: aftur_spildo

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum 

What I’ve learned from literature part 2 – the world needs more love letters

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AfterlightImage.jpgI have always been very fond of letters in literature. First of all, I find them to be a nice, refreshing change among all those descriptions and dialogues between characters – second of all, letters have a way of explaining the other persons’ feelings that just can’t be done in normal narrative fiction-writing. Since a letter is so personal, you can really allow yourself to dig deep into your protagonist’s true personality by expressing a sincere love for someone through decorative words. How wonderful! 

FIRST – I want to show you guys some highly romantic examples of love-letters from books – then, some real-life examples between famous writers and musicians! Yes, I said it!

1. Allow yourself to be a little extra – Like Captain Frederick Wentworth did it in his love-letter to Anne Elliot towards the end of her novel “Persuasion” by Jane Austen – where he finally opened up his heart to her, expressing everything that he had been keeping a secret for so long! 

Miss A. E

I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone, I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in  – F.W 

 

2. Don’t beat around the bush. Just pour out your heart in the most direct way, and it will become poetry  – just like Noah did in his letter to Ally – from “The Notebook” by Nicholas Sparks 

 My dearest Ally,

I couldn’t sleep last nite because I know it’s over between us. I’m not
bitter anymore because I know what we had was real. And if in some distant
place in the future we see each other in our new lives I will smile at you
with joy and remember how we spent a summer beneath the trees learning from
each other and growing in love. The best love is the kind that awakens the
soul and makes us reach for more and that plants a fire in our hearts and
brings peace to our minds and that’s what you’ve given me and that’s what
I’d hope to give to you forever. I love you; I’ll be seeing you.

– Noah

 

3. Be kind, be soft. Be a comforting shoulder – like Gerry was to Holly in his last letter to her, from “PS. I love you” by Cecelia Ahern

Dear Holly,
I don’t have much time. I don’t mean literally, I mean you’re out buying ice cream and you’ll be home soon. But I have a feeling this is the last letter, because there is only one thing left to tell you. It isn’t to go down memory lane or make you buy a lamp, you can take care of yourself without any help from me. It’s to tell you how much you move me, how you changed me. You made me a man, by loving me Holly. And for that, I am eternally grateful… Literally. If you can promise me anything, promise me that whenever you’re sad, or unsure, or you lose complete faith, that you’ll try to see yourself through my eyes. Thank you for the honor of being my wife. I’m a man with no regrets. How lucky am I. You made my life, Holly. But I’m just one chapter in yours. There’ll be more. I promise. So here it comes, the big one. Don’t be afraid to fall in love again. Watch out for that signal, when life as you know it ends.
P.S. I will always love you.

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And here comes the letters from real life … 

Zelda Fitzgerald to F. Scott Fitzgerald 

I look down the tracks and see you coming – and out of every haze and mist your darling rumpled trousers are hurrying to me – Without you, dearest dearest I couldn’t see or hear or feel or think – or live – I love you so and I’m never in all our lives going to let us be apart another night. It’s like begging for mercy of a storm or killing Beauty or growing old, without you. I want to kiss you so – and in the back where your dear hair starts and your chest – I love you – and I can’t tell you how much – To think that I’ll die without you knowing – Goofo, you’ve got to try to feel how much I do – how inanimate I am when you’re gone – I can’t even hate these damnable people – Nobody’s got any right to live but us – and they’re dirtying up our world and I can’t hate them because I want you so – Come Quick – Come Quick to me – I could never do without you if you hated me and were covered with sores like a leper – if you ran away with another woman and starved me and beat me – I still would want you, I know – 

Lover, Lover, Darling –      Your wife. 

Oscar Wilde to Lord Alfred Douglas (Platonic or romantic love?) 

My Own Boy,

Your sonnet is quite lovely, and it is a marvel that those red rose-leaf lips of yours should be made no less for the madness of music and song than for the madness of kissing. Your slim gilt soul walks between passion and poetry. I know Hyacinthus, whom Apollo loved so madly, was you in Greek days.

Why are you alone in London, and when do you go to Salisbury? Do go there to cool your hands in the grey twilight of Gothic things, and come here whenever you like. It is a lovely place and lacks only you; but go to Salisbury first.

Always, with undying love, yours,

Oscar

Ludwig Van Beethoven to unknown “Immortal Beloved” (who could’ve known that the father of beautiful music, also was the father of beautiful poetry?)

Even in bed my ideas yearn towards you, my Immortal Beloved, here and there joyfully, then again sadly, awaiting from Fate, whether it will listen to us. I can only live, either altogether with you or not at all. Yes, I have determined to wander about for so long far away, until I can fly into your arms and call myself quite at home with you, can send my soul enveloped by yours into the realm of spirits — yes, I regret, it must be. You will get over it all the more as you know my faithfulness to you; never another one can own my heart, never — never! O God, why must one go away from what one loves so, and yet my life in W. as it is now is a miserable life. Your love made me the happiest and unhappiest at the same time. At my actual age I should need some continuity, sameness of life — can that exist under our circumstances? Angel, I just hear that the post goes out every day — and must close therefore, so that you get the L. at once. Be calm — love me — today — yesterday.

What longing in tears for you — You — my Life — my All — farewell. Oh, go on loving me — never doubt the faithfullest heart
Of your beloved

L

Ever thine.
Ever mine.
Ever ours.

 

So, do you see where I’m coming from? What if people today, STILL wrote love-letters like these, expressing their profound love for someone? It doesn’t even have to be to a seductive mistress or lover. It could be to your wife or husband. Zelda wrote countless letters to Scott, even after they got married. Their love didn’t die. Why? Many have been wondering about this, including myself. But maybe we have found the answer? Maybe couples should write more letters to each other? Wouldn’t it be great if we could all inspire each other to write like these people … Perhaps there’s something to learn from Zelda, Oscar, and Ludwig – Perhaps it would be a more beautiful world? More communicative, more compassionate, more romance? 

Anyhow, I’d like to hear what you guys think – Which one did you prefer? The real-life letters or the ones made up by fiction-writers? Tell me in the comments below! 

Love, 

Aftur S. Nerdrum