a beginning-just a rough thingggg.Posted on 2008.11.09 at 21:48
I suppose some might think me cruel. I suppose some may think me unkind. I, personally, think myself a nietzschean paragon, a lone hero in search of universal truth. A voyager. An artist. I don’t believe many realise is that art can be in any form, it’s life is not confined to pictures on dead paper. Art is fluid, flexible and addictive. It can be seen anywhere, from a Picasso painting to the arrangement of coats on a banister rail. From a view over a summer time lake to the beauty of death. Oh, I know I’m not the first to profess a love of art, I know I’m not the first to use it as a line of defence but do not call me Humbert. I know my actions were reprehensible, I know most of you would willingly condemn me without a second thought, nevertheless I implore you to listen. To keep an open mind and save your judgement until you hear my tale.
Once upon a time, there was a young lad called Matthew Horn-well, born into an affluent family he never wanted for material possessions. His father, Remus Horn-well, was a political bureaucrat of high standing within the government; His mother, Bella Horn-well nee Cromford, was the daughter of a wealthy aristocrat who specialised in socialising. Fairy tale beginning right? Money, Family and you turned out like you did? Tutt-tutt. Ah but dear reader, things are not always as they seem.
As a child I was always told I resembled an angel, soft flaxen locks, big blue eyes. The blue has gone now. With age they darkened into a steel grey. I’m sure you think that’s representative of something, the loss of innocence perhaps, the onset of insanity possibly. Don’t be naïve. Sometimes things don’t need to be read into, sometimes things just are. Besides, none of us can maintain the innocence of youth, no matter how hard we may try.
I lived in a country manor in the south of Yorkshire, I won’t bore you with details of setting as I find that kind of thing rather tedious myself. You just need to know that it was grand, opulent. I’d very much like to visit it again but I’m afraid of the memories. I know, I know to be afraid of something as tenuous and subjective as the past does appear to be pathetic. But I’m an artist you see. The soul of a poet, it makes me rather sensitive.
Anyway, back to the narrative. Nice and chronological. Reader-friendly. Who said I wasn’t accommodating? The first few years of my development progressed nicely, not that I can really remember anything but I believe that itself is indicative of a stable upbringing. I was brought up by the family nanny. What a shame you must think, oh how he must have been deprived of maternal love and warmth. Well, to be perfectly honest, it was of no bother to me, my mother was always somewhat cold. She’s always been like that as far as I’m aware. Distant. Not an ideal mother by any means and I don’t have any delusions that she harboured any maternal feelings towards me. Not the maternal type. No, not at all. And the nanny was nice enough I suppose.
I never had many friends growing up, being high-born I was never allowed to associate with the children of the town and, after being regaled with tales of their absolute vulgarity, I never much wished to. I was home-schooled up to the age of 11 by a governess. I know, I know, how terribly old-fashioned, but that’s how it is when you’re from an aristocratic family, tradition, tradition, tradition. It was effective enough, giving me a grounding in humanities, languages, sciences and the arts.
In my free time I read. Feasting on Milton, devouring Dante and gorging myself on Shakespeare. I seldom left my retreat and, as a result became fairly thin and pale; features that are still with me at the grand old age of 22. Twenty-Two and trapped by Catch-22, well, I’ll leave that for you to decide. As a result of excessive reading I became all the more detached from my peers and began viewing them from afar, scrutinising them and looking for symbolism, searching for meaning and analysing their little lives. This did not prove to be beneficial to my transition into secondary education.