Niagara Gazette — Christine Armesto still remembers the words from her favorite love letter.
Years ago, an old boyfriend once wrote in an apology letter to her, “your beauty disturbs the heavens … “
Armesto, should know a good love letter when she sees one. She’s been writing them professionally for 20 years from her Amherst office on Niagara Falls Boulevard, at the edge of the Town of Tonawanda.
Her business is called Love Letters by Cyrano, referencing the great love story of Cyrano de Bergerac, a large-nose man who wrote love letters to help another win the heart of his beloved.
While the bulk of her writing business is helping others with resumes and other professional letters (www.resumes-writing.com), Armesto still enjoys sitting down with someone to help them express their feelings.
“People come to me who have something on their heart and they don’t know how to take it from their heart to paper,” she explained. “That’s my job.” She typically sits with a client for about an hour, as they share their love stories, and she crafts a letter around what she’s heard. Later, the client takes what Armest has written and puts their personal touch to it, she said.
“You want to strike the heart of the person you’re writing to,” she advised to those who might write such a letter. “Don’t be afraid to open your heart and let it out.
One of the most important components of a love letter is that it is actually hand-written — a virtual love letter is not the real thing, says poet Bob Giannetti, owner of Bob’s Olde Books in Lewiston.
“I can’t imagine using anything but pen and paper, and writing the letter in one’s own hand,” he said. “This is the ultimate mark of personal love and regard. And the recipient’s act of unsealing the envelope, unfolding and reading the letter inside provides a private and personal connection that speaks more touchingly of the writer’s love than floating words in cyberspace.”
For those who worry about choosing just the right words, simplicity is the best idea, the poet said. “Truth and authenticity can best be served by the simple resolve to express one’s own best thoughts in his or her own voice, poetic or not.”
And, it doesn’t need to be Valentine’s Day to write a love letter, says Hartland romance author Laura Stickland.
Strickland, whose three historical romance novels — including her latest “Daughter of Sherwood” — are available on Amazon.com, says “I think that the best love letters are the ones that are unexpected. There should not need to be a reason to write them except that you are in love with the person and you want them to know.”
“When someone says on a page that they vow they will love you forever, that’s the ultimate,” she said. “Life is difficult and there are a lot of day to day demands. But, those demands should never defeat love. Love should endure.”