Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds | Murder Ballads, 1996
The reasons I feel compelled to write love songs are legion. Some of these became clearer to me when I sat down with a friend of mine. We admitted to each other that we both suffered from the psychological disorder that the medical profession terms "Erotigraphomania".
Erotigraphomania is the obsessive desire to write love letters. He shared with me the fact that he had written, and sent, over the past five years more than 7,000 love letters to his wife. My friend looked exhausted, and his shame was almost palpable. We discussed the power of the love letter, and found that it was, not surprisingly, very similar to that of the love song. Both serve as extended meditations on one's beloved. Both serve to shorten the distance between the writer and the recipient. Both hold within them a permanence and power that the spoken word does not. Both are erotic exercises in themselves. Both have the potential to reinvent, through words, like Pygmalion with his self-created lover of stone, one's beloved. But more than that, both have the insidious power to imprison one's beloved, to bind their hands with love-lines, gag them, blind them, for words become the defining parameter that keeps the image of the loved one imprisoned in a bondage of poetry. "I have taken possession of you," the love letter, the love song, whispers, for ever.
Nick Cave, in The secret life of the love song - The complet lyrics 1978 - 2013