A love letter written by a much younger and more vulnerable Tupac Shakur than the one that penned the scathing “Hit ‘Em Up” has recently surfaced and is freely available on the internet. A disclaimer, though: if you prefer to continue thinking of Tupac only as a hardened hustler, turn back now, because the letter will forever change the light in which you see Shakur, as will the reaction statement written by the recipient of Tupac’s affections.
The letter was penned by Tupac Shakur in 1988 while he was attending Tamalpais high school in Mill Valley, California, and Vibe reports it was written to a girl in Tupac’s Shakespeare studies class and referred to in the letter as “Beethoven” because she was, apparently, very skilled on the piano.
Shakur’s “Beethoven” herself recently put the Tupac love letter up for sale and posted a picture of it online.
It is immediately obvious from the letter’s appearance that Tupac was a lovestruck teenager at the time of writing — Shakur replaced as many words he could with symbols or icons representing the words (an eye symbol instead of the word “eye,” a heart instead of the word “heart,” the number “4” instead of the word “for,” etc.), he fails to use paragraph breaks, and Tupac’s prose is surprisingly devoid of proper comma placement and other punctuation usage. All this enhances the vulnerable adolescent feel of Tupac’s love letter, but, combined with Shakur’s rough handwriting, it also makes is a bit difficult to read, so a typed out transcript – with corrected punctuation and paragraph breaks added – is below. The original Instagram image of Tupac’s note is below that.
I felt compelled to write you. I can’t really explain it, but I feel really good vibes from you. I’m almost sure we’ll be very close friends. I would have never guessed that you and I would be friends. But as the old saying goes… wait, how does that saying go? Forget it! You get the point!
I want you to know that you can tell me anything and if you ever need a shoulder to cry on, you can always cry on mine. I have so many great thoughts about what lies ahead for us, and it is my hope that they all come true.
As you will soon find out, I do not spare words, I say what I feel. So if something I say scares you, please don’t panic, because I tend to get over-emotional. My heart usually leads me too fast, and that’s probably why I always get hurt. So if it ever seems as though I’m moving too fast, please slow me down!
Talking to you on the phone was such a good feeling for me. I was beginning to feel alone and out of the blue I meet you and it’s almost like I’ve known you for years. We have so much in common. We both adore Prince, we have both had broken hearts, and we both adore candles! What else could I ask for!
See you tomorrow Beethoven!
P.S. My phone number: 332-4725
For Eternity,Tupac Shakur”
The cluttered format and cheeky icons contained in young Tupac Shakur’s love letter can be easily be chalked up as products of Shakur’s adolescent angst, but other elements of the writing are telling as early hints of Tupac’s huge ego that would eventually drive Shakur to become one of the most successful and talked-about hip-hop artists of all time. For example, the fact that Tupac generally talks about himself instead of the two of them when discussing happiness (“That’s why I always get hurt,” “What more could I ask for”). Another instance can be found at the bottom of the letter, where ‘Pac signed “TUPAC SHAKUR” in block letters that were italicized and serifed to invoke a rockstar feel. Who signs their name like that on a love letter?
In a response letter Tupac’s “Beethoven” released to TMZ when she put the romantic note up for sale several days ago, she states that she and Shakur both lived in apartments outside Marin city, an area that is still made up of an almost entirely black population. “Beethoven” was one of the only white people living there even in her time, she states in the letter.
She also states that she and Tupac had been very close as “lost souls who had found a kindred spirit in one another” during high school, but they had drifted apart as Shakur evolved away from the sensitive romantic poet he had been in high school and become “the man who tattooed ‘Thug Life’ on his chest and was gunned down on a Las Vegas street.”
Shakur’s ex-flame went on that she did not care for the music Tupac produced professionally.
“It was nothing like those freestyles I remember in front of our school,” she writes in her response to Shakur’s note.
“I knew the kid who made me understand Shakespeare and who didn’t care that he dressed different or wore his hair different.”
Remnants of Tupac’s sensitive side could be seen in some of his biggest hits, like his 1998 anthem, “Changes,” but “Beethoven” is right when she says her ex-beau’s days of opening himself up and penning his deepest insecurities were lost when Shakur hit the big-time.
Tupac’s love letter is being auctioned off, and the current price is $35,000, reports Oxygen. You can expect the price to go much higher, though, as a letter written by Tupac Shakur when he was in jail sold several years ago for $225,000.
[Photo by Milos Bicanski/Getty Images and Rachel Murray/Getty Images for Madame Tussauds Hollywood]