Thank you for your letter alerting me to the “dreadful review” of my poems in the What’s on this weekend page of the Goring Flaneur. I am guessing that you may be disappointed to learn that you weren’t the first to let me know that yet another nonentity regards my literary output as “utterly without merit”.
It just so happens that I was reading Borges when news arrived from the sharpened tongue of my friend and chief detractor Scamander that no less a judge than the poetaster Tarquin Feather (!!) had criticised my output as lightweight, dull and dead. As soon as he uttered the name of Feather I had less doubt than the narrator of The Gospel According to Mark that a crucifixion was to be attempted. If you had been there to see and hear me conducting my defence, and if you are at least 50 years old or have parents or acquaintances who have recordings of the shows, you may well have thought of me that I have something of Perry Mason in me (and certainly not, as Scamander suggested, his cock).
Well anyway, I said to Scamander, how can that fool possibly believe something can be both lightweight and dead, (I should make clear that I said this in an American accent as similar to that of Raymond Burr’s as I am able to imitate). And with regard to your own assertions re merit and the lack thereof in my long poem 0h! Spatchcock! (an extended metaphor by the way – I am not altogether amazed that you missed that) it seems to my admittedly very slightly ruffled ego that your opinion must surely be based on the affront to your own latency (of whatever variety – far be it from me to suggest that self-doubt or loathing in the matter of your sexuality or your politics or your religion of choice may be behind your frothing, but, well…) rather than any regard to merit since if it were purely that you would not have bothered to devote even such little time and small expense to inform me of my unworthiness.
Thank you, however, for the gift of your time. Man has nothing more valuable to give away than time so yes, a hearty thanks to you at least for that.