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Loving Letters From Ogden Nash: A Family Album, 1990

For a deeply sincere but lighter touch see Ogden Nash’s letters to
Frances Rider Leonard (in Linell Nash Smith, ed., Loving Letters From
Ogden Nash: A Family Album, 1990):

“I couldn’t go to bed without telling you how particularly marvelous
you were today. You don’t seem to have any idea of your own loveliness
and sweetness; that can’t go on, and I shall see that it doesn’t.”

“Both your letters arrived this morning. Thank you. I had sunk pretty
low in the eyes of the elevator man, to whom I have been handing a
letter to mail nearly every night and who has evidently noticed that I
have been getting nothing in return. I could sense his thinking, ‘You
have no charm, sir.’ But now it’s all right again—his attitude today is
as respectful and reverent as I could wish.”

“I’ve been living all day on your letter…. Have I ever told you that I
love you? Because I do. I even loved you yesterday when I didn’t get
any letter and thought you hated me for trying to rush things. It ought
to worry me to think that no matter what you ever do to me that is
dreadful I will still have to keep on loving you; but it doesn’t, and I

“I’ve been reading your letter over all day, it’s so dear…. Haven’t you
a photograph or even a snapshot of yourself? I want to look at and
touch it, as I read and touch your letters; it helps bring you a little

“Do you know what is the most delightful sound in the world? I’m
sorry that you’ll never be able to hear it. It’s when I’m sitting in your
library, and hear you cross the floor of your room and open the door;
then your footsteps in the hall and on the stairs. In four days now—.”

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