A letter written by physicist Richard Feynman to his dead wife, Arline, Oct. 17, 1946:
I adore you, sweetheart … It is such a terribly long time since I last wrote to you – almost two years but I know you’ll excuse me because you understand how I am, stubborn and realistic; and I thought there was no sense to writing. But now I know my darling wife that it is right to do what I have delayed in doing, and what I have done so much in the past. I want to tell you I love you.
I find it hard to understand in my mind what it means to love you after you are dead – but I still want to comfort and take care of you – and I want you to love me and care for me. I want to have problems to discuss with you – I want to do little projects with you. I never thought until just now that we can do that. What should we do. We started to learn to make clothes together – or learn Chinese – or getting a movie projector.
Can’t I do something now? No. I am alone without you and you were the “idea-woman” and general instigator of all our wild adventures. When you were sick you worried because you could not give me something that you wanted to and thought I needed. You needn’t have worried.
Just as I told you then there was no real need because I loved you in so many ways so much. And now it is clearly even more true – you can give me nothing now yet I love you so that you stand in my way of loving anyone else – but I want to stand there.
I’ll bet that you are surprised that I don’t even have a girlfriend after two years. But you can’t help it, darling, nor can I – I don’t understand it, for I have met many girls … and I don’t want to remain alone – but in two or three meetings they all seem ashes. You only are left to me. You are real.
My darling wife, I do adore you. I love my wife. My wife is dead,
At the end he wrote, “PS Please excuse my not mailing this – but I don’t know your new address.”