Thursday, 15 May 2014
Perhaps one should not write of compliments; it should be enough to receive them with modest good grace, and revisit them silently, in solitude, as one may sometimes remove a precious necklace from a jewellery box simply to enjoy the play of light on stone and gold, the pale lustre of pearl, the opal's sudden fire.
This afternoon, a sweetly scented afternoon of sunny aspect, a chance encounter with the former director of the local arts centre furnished me with a compliment upon my drawings, which I received gladly enough, for I had hitherto, despite the bonny afternoon, been much cast down about my work, and questioning deeply my proposed intent of resuming the making of studies of clouds.
I took my leave of her with lightened footsteps, and a gladdened heart, for the moment at least persuaded that the work I exhibited at the local arts centre several years ago is worthy, quietly pleased that the drawings still have vitality in someone's thoughts.
It is monstrously difficult for me to retain any degree of confidence in my abilities to draw, or to fashion works of art by any other means; I am habitually consumed by voracious self doubt, against which devouring force I must needs find the way to fortify myself in order to carry out the resumption of my practice.
I keep a necklace hidden in the recesses of my mind; one strung with the compliments bestowed on my drawing, or writing throughout the years of my life, the first dating from when I was very young; still at primary school. The necklace is not thickly clustered, however, rather it's gems hang in isolation, at irregular intervals. They gleam reassuringly in the darkness of my thoughts; I reach for them when my distress seems otherwise too much to bear. They are like affirmations, uttered not by myself, for I am unable to do so, but by others; those others whom I have sought to please ever since I was a child.
I have now a new jewel to thread upon the necklace, a delicate moonstone, perhaps, or transparent ancient amber, a moment of glory transformed, coalesced, an amethystine remembrance that I must care for, and may visit whenever my heart is faint and my will reluctant, my soul doubt riven.