Whether I was born a romantic is hard to say. I am pretty sure I knew this by the time I was five. How I knew I could not say since the word “romantic” had surely not entered my vocabulary at that point.
I am not necessarily referring to the ideas of romantic love (though I am sure I have had some of those) but more to the romantic philosophies of the likes of Keats and Shelley whose poetry had an emphasis on the imagination and emotions and a predilection for melancholy, among other qualities. Perhaps some would call it idyllic without being sentimental, if that is possible.
I am not currently a practicing romantic. I see that as a problem.
The world, you see, over time beat it out of me. Granted the world wasn’t entirely to blame for my naiveté and over sensitivity.
The world also wasn’t to blame for my faulty belief that if I gave out romanticism I would get it back. And perhaps worse yet that if I gave I should receive. Naiveté on full display. My ill-practiced romanticism was crushed over and over again. Understandably so.
It took a long, long time to realize that if romanticism was going to be rewarding it also had to be altruistic. You have to practice it without expectation of reward. You cannot hand control of what makes you happy to someone else. You cannot be apologetic for it. That will not do.
I knew this. Really I did. I had just never applied it to my dormant romantic spirit.
Now to come to this epiphany is well and good but figuring out how to reanimate a crushed spirit is a trickier proposition. Where is Dr. Frankenstein when I need him? Where will I find that lightning bolt?
Perhaps Jake Bugg Knows.