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A Thought for Today
When young, we trust ourselves too much;
when older, we trust ourselves too little.
The letters regarding “To One
Absent” and the "Love Letters Unsent" continue to come in. I don’t suppose
there is anything more rewarding than doing something you enjoy and
hearing from others who enjoy your effort.
I like to write, but doing so on such a regular basis as I do for The
Flight Plan doesn’t always allow me the thought and revision to produce my
best work so I’m doubly pleased that the new poems and letters are being
well received. If it seems like bragging to print the following responses,
so be it.
Thanks to all of you that have written. I only printed a response to one
letter but I hope you know how much I appreciate the encouragement from
each and all of you. As a further thank you I’ve included in this FP “A
Love Letter Unsent, V.”
TO ONE ABSENT
Rod, Your poem "To One Absent" blew me away or perhaps I should just say
“WOW.” Ironically, though it’s also your statement in Flight Plan 06/02/01
that got me.
"Lately the same situation that inspired ‘To One Absent” has caused me to
begin writing love letters that may never be seen by the one for whom they
are intended. But I thought if the poem could touch people in ways that
are meaningful to them perhaps I might let go of a few of the not too
personal to be printed letters I’m writing.”
I write, and have for years, but only to reflect my
feelings on paper, live the moment, throw the paper away. I easily related
to those “Unsent Love Letters.” Perhaps the letters were/is all about how
we want to love how we want to be loved. Maybe it’s that we’re looking for
the Sunday I saw love look back at me from you.
“Do I believe you love me?
I never doubt it. I found security
the Sunday I saw love
look back at me from you.
Then is when I knew
it would be you for always. Then
is when the courage came
that will sustain me
until whatever time has passed
until the time is right for us.”
Guess this is what makes poems and music beautiful,
we can all relate in different ways. Just in loving and being in love
makes us all kids again...pretty neat huh? Thanks for this poem and all
those over the years and mostly Rod, for just being the person you are.
William P. Tyler
Rod, been catching up on the last couple day's flight plans and I saw all
the mail you rec'd on To One Absent. When I read the poem, I immediately
thought of my mom who passed away 10 months ago. When I printed it off and
read it to my 79-year-old dad, we both cried, and he asked if he could
keep a copy next to his bedside and my mom's picture. That I think, is the
ultimate compliment. Thank you again for just the right words. I hope you
will include To One Absent in your next book. Love, Deb
LOVE LETTERS UNSENT
Letter Unsent, III"... sometimes it takes my breath away when you write so
clearly the words in my heart. Thank you Rod for the passion you can bring
forth from the deepest darkest places. I thank God for you...Nancy,
Bud, You did it again with your "letter". Especially when I saw the words
"We Are". I don't know if I ever told you, probably not...but those two
words are what held Bill and I together through some really difficult
times when we were apart, and when we were together. We even had them put
on our wedding cake. And they are part of the graphic on the entrance to
our page"- "We Are - Bill and tara - Our Story". Even now when I get
scared, lonely, depressed, feel inadequate, or unsure, Bill will pull me
close and say "we are" and immediately I find a new breath of hope enter
You are incredible, and cause me to stop and remember so very much. I will
forever be grateful for the night you came into my life 30+ years ago, for
the day you came back to me and all of us with ASPTL, meeting you FINALLY
and being able to say the words I have held inside for so many years (I
don't even know that you heard them, or that I spoke them out loud, but
they were said). THANK you thank YOU.
Bill sends a hello. He's working on getting the Message Center back up,
and my email (which has been down for 11 days now). I am a better person
for having lived so many years with you in my life. tara
FROM A PRISONER
incarcerated at a maximum-security facility in California and will be here
for the next four years. I’m not here for something I didn’t do but for a
crime I committed so I’m doing lawful time. That doesn’t make it any
I wanted you to know that I feel each and every one of your unsent love
letters reached me and I feel they were written for me alone. I don’t get
many letters but I cherish each and every one of yours and I have
committed some to memory. Love, William C.
I LIKE THE IDEA OF SENTIMENTAL SATURDAY
obviously your public does too (6/2). And the 6/1 photo is okay - but I
like them better when you're smiling. Love 'n prayers, Bea
AND THE PLATINUM COLLECTION
Rod, Thanks for the posting of the letters. (How appropriate that such a
wide range of emotional responses would come on Elgar's birthday!)
I was overwhelmed when I first read the poem (and still am), but not only
for myself. Although my close friend reads your page, I forwarded the poem
to him anyway as it read just like something he would have written for his
beloved -- or maybe even something his lover would have sent from the
side. Love, Rocky
P.S. The new CD is like a giant box of Godiva -- so rich it's impossible
to devour all at once.
couldn’t guess where the inspiration comes from that has caused you to
write such plain but intimate and beautiful love letters, but I hope they
do not go unsent.
Whoever it is – someone real or only in your mind – it has to be someone
very special and so I hope that you will be together one day for the
always that you speak about. Mitch
Evening, Rod! This has haunted me all night in my sleep and upon awakening
it is still heavy on my mind...
“A private conceit, known only to two people, ties the two poems together.
Let’s see how long the other party to the secret can keep it that way”
It dawned on me that, how in the world can the other
party keep it a secret, when you have already told thousands of people on
the Internet that there is a private conceit? It's not known between only
two people now you silly! *giggling*! S.
Dear “S”, You couldn’t be more wrong in thinking this is a secret that is
now shared by more than two people. One of the reasons this is such an
important relationship is that it is built on trust. No one but the one
the letters are intended for will ever know the ‘secret.’ Not ever. I
couldn’t be more confident of that. I don’t even consider it dangerous to
say that there is no possible way anyone will ever find out unless one of
us talks about it. We won’t. R.
THE AWFUL NEED TO BE WITH YOU
this line from the other day's Love Letters Unsent "I don't suppose I'll
ever know how much of us is memory and how much made up because of my
awful need to be with you." I can totally relate to that one.
Someday I'll write you about my long distance love and all the could haves
and what ifs. I have discovered that there is an interesting relationship
that forms when you actively love someone but you never see them or spend
time with them. Just a voice, in the darkness, on the other end of the
telephone. Friend or lover.
The relationship morphs on its own in your mind. And distinguishing
between fact and fiction is nonexistent. You tend to make your own reality
I suppose. Simran
AGE & UNSENT LETTERS
Rod, Finally received my copy of ASPTL, absolutely marvelous. Age is
Better is the most wonderful and positive statement I have ever heard or
read about growing older. I have often lamented the passing of my youth,
but your line about those we mourn who never finished the journey real hit
home, my husband died at 27, my dad at 54, and my Mom at 61. Mom and dad
were quite young, now that I view those years from the ripe old age of 52.
Thanks to your poem and your spirit I will now celebrate my years and grow
proud of each one I add.
May I also say the unsent love letters really touch my soul? I too have
letters that have never been sent. Do you ever feel any regret for not
sending them? I never did until now. Almost makes me wish they could reach
the person that the were intended for.
Please keep writing, if you can only do this once a week so be it. I would
rather have something new sometimes, then nothing at all. We all love you,
and personally you have added a new layer of richness and wonder to my
life. Thank you and God Bless and keep you. Love, Laura
SOME OTHER LOVE COMES THROUGH THE DOOR
beautiful your letter. So once again some other love comes through the
door or through the wires, or a computer screen, or on the wind even?
Is it that we fall in love with love, and then seek to personify it in the
person who comes closest and who lets us touch them while they're touching
us? I truly don't know.... I think maybe only God - however one perceives
him - can truly fill the deep hollow space, small - yet boundless - that
exits in some hearts and souls. Or else we haven't found THE "one"
I write so many letters I will never send to a man I know now I will never
find. We have to write in physical terms - how else to express? But I
often wonder if those love letters are not, in fact, letters to God - and
that is why the man is unknowable. Perhaps the quest is always for home -
not a place so much as a return of essence.
I'm grateful, though, for other kinds of love - for warmth and wetness,
someone deep inside, the adjustment of each breath to suit
another's...inhale....exhale…. It's a special place to be ...caught
between breaths in some imperfect love.
As usual, your writing touches me more than words can ever say....but I
say them anyway....Take care, be loved and love. Miss Pris
YOU SOUND SO HAPPY
recent love letters you've published have just been beautiful...I can just
imagine the ones you are keeping private. she's a very lucky woman...just
as you are to have someone so special who can inspire such words. whoever
she is, I wish you both the very best.
it was always my dream to find someone who would care for me in the way
you care for her. I believe that I found it once and now I know that I'll
not find it again. life is so short, rod. do whatever it takes to make you
and her both happy...don't wait. if it remains just your love letters,
then keep writing them and hopefully someday, whoever she is will know
without a doubt that one of the most special men I have ever known...loves
her. what a gift that will be for her...share those feelings with her, if
you're not already. and if you're waiting, don't wait for "someday"...that
day could never come. trust me.
you sound so happy and so content with your life...that makes me smile :)
thank you for sharing that part of you with all of us....
take care of yourself and enjoy that feeling of love...I remember how
incredible that can be. love, melinda
The month of July is going to be a rough one. I’ll be on the road or in
the studio and Ken is moving house and family to a brand new residence. To
make things a little easier I thought I might fill some of the days with
Flight Plans from the past. I’d appreciate suggestion from anyone who has
a favorite FP or two from the past three years that I can offer up again.
Now and again when time permits I’ll try to send some postings from the
RM 6/17/01 Previously
appearance dates just announced!
Booking for "An Evening with
Rod McKuen" at the Riverton Rendezvous is open! Click below for
Concert & Appearance Details