Yesterday someone left the following comment on one of my poems over at the other site.
“Sublime. Elusive. Both confident enough to play and self-depreciating enough to know why”
Well. That is probably just about the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me. I mean, sublime? Really? Anyone ever called you sublime?
What do I feel about this?
It certainly provokes pleasure. Hard for it not to. I most certainly see myself as ambiguous and they nailed that one. So that’s a triple whammy – I got down on paper what I struggle to express in life, someone that doesn’t know me read it and saw it, and the upshot may therefore even be that it is true. It’s a possibility, at least.
It also suggests that my mojo is working, even at a distance. Given the various ways in which my mojo has been compromised over the last fifteen years, and the way the weight of history breeds anxiety that it may in fact have died a distant death – it’s encouraging. This person had no idea of my history in the way that I do.
I note that I cannot distinguish between a comment on my poem and a comment on me. That is probably fair enough. I don’t write in character. I could never be a novelist.
There is a counter-current or two.
Firstly, I know I’m susceptible to flattery. In turn, that flattery can be a tool of manipulation and I have sometimes been caught unawares by that. So my positive reaction is shot through with a sliver of distrust. “Sublime” seems a bit over the top and I cannot be entirely sure whether to believe it. Having said that, why flatter in anonymity?
Secondly, I know I’m an arsehole.