Oh my goodness! Pick one? Just one? One glorious, immortal bloom from a garden so bursting with criticism it catches the breath? Or punches the gut, if one were prone to semantic quibbling in the face of such dazzling and profligate splendour.
So let me take you beyond the wall, to this flourishing patch of poison ivy, prickly pear and deadly nightshade. And creeping onion weed, whose delicate flowers belie the hardy seeds that sneak away from the most diligent psyche grubber, hitch rides on unsuspecting hosts, lie dormant for as long as it takes, and pop up as vigorous as ever to multiply and flourish. These are the stabs in the back, the delicate rapier thrusts to the kidney, the unforeseen chops the base of the skull that bring one to one’s knees, while the enemy departs chuckling with glee to remove the concealing cloak and reappear bathed in sweetness, light and sickening solicitude.
With honest, face-to-face criticism, you have a chance. You can refute it, nod wisely and ignore it, or take it onboard and act accordingly. The nasty, insidious art of rumour-mongering, implication and subtle nuance demolishes defence in advance, and leaves a slick of invisible barbs to leach poison for years to come.