If you’ve been reading here for long, you’ll remember me blogging about “Letters” or “Letters to an English Professor” for a year and more. You’ll remember that we went through dozens of title possibilities. We wanted something that said “romance” but also hinted at the core of the story, and when we finally settled on “Dear Sir, I’m Yours” it was like angels singing. Why didn’t I have that as the title in the first place? It’s PERFECT.
Since it’s June 1st and Dear Sir, I’m Yours will be released in a few short weeks, Conn and Rae have been on my mind quite a bit. I suppose it’s no wonder, then, that Rae began writing more letters to her English professor. I plan to share many of them here over the next few weeks to hopefully whet your appetite for more.
Five years ago, Rae was Dr. Connagher’s student in his senior-level Romantic Period poetry class. It was a class that she never forgot for many reasons. In one short semester, he not only managed to instill in her a love of poetry, but also a habit of letter writing. In our modern age of e-mail, IM, and Twitter — a story in 140 chars? — a formal handwritten letter is a rarity, so it’s no surprise that Conn would treasure each and every one of these letters……if she ever sent them.
Dear Dr. Connagher:
You don’t know me. To be honest, I didn’t know you before today. I didn’t even know what classes you taught, but I ran down to the Registrar’s Office and enrolled in your only open class anyway. Thank God you teach English instead of Calculus, but I’m afraid a senior-level poetry class may make as little sense to me.
It doesn’t matter. I have to be in your class. I want to be in the front row when you begin roll call on Monday. I want you to know my name, and see me, and maybe, just maybe, you might feel it too.
I know this is crazy. I’m crazy. You don’t know me at all, and I’m just a student–an accounting student! But I heard your voice, and I knew. You weren’t even speaking to me, or I might have done something thoroughly embarrassing. The thought of speaking to you, with your full attention focused on me, makes my tongue plaster to the roof of my mouth. My stomach quivers, my hands tremble, and so help me God, every muscle in my body clamps down with longing.
I have to be in your class.
No, I’ll never send this to you. I don’t want you to think I’m just another crazy stalker student offering sexual favors for a good grade, or screeching about improper behavior to blackmail you or get you fired. On the first, I’m not that kind of girl; on the second, I’m ashamed to say that I’d never complain about your improper behavior.
To be perfectly honest, I’d welcome your improper behavior. Wholeheartedly.
I heard your voice, and I knew. I knew I had to be in your class.
I knew I had to be…
~ Rae Jackson