Immersed in Henry Miller and Anais Nin
I’ve lost track of where my notes have got up to with Henry Miller and Anais Nin. I am still reading ‘Sexus’ and ‘Henry and June’.
Over the holidays I have marked passages and words.
There could be more overlap with where I left off, or gaps if I fail to go back far enough. The idea is to note passages that have personal bearing on my approach to life and writing and reflect on these in relation to the antics and writings of Anais Nin and Henry Miller.
For example, and this takes me some way back into ‘Sexus’ on the questions of the ‘Frustrated Creative’.
‘When one is trying to do something beyond his known powers it is useless to seek the approval of friends. Friends are at their best in moments of defeat – at least that is my experience. Then they either fail utterly or they surpass themselves’. Miller, (1949:28).
Continuing with the same passage:
‘Sorrow is the great link – sorrow and misfortune. But when you are testing your powers, when you are trying to something new, the best friend is apt to prove a traitor. The very way he wishes you luck, when you broach your chimerical ideas, is enough to dishearten you.’ Miller, (1949:29).
Even I do this … with X, with Y … but not with fellow ‘down on their luck writers’ like Z.
It’s as if the uselessness of my own ‘chimerical ideas’ is revealed when I hear others carrying on in the same fashion.
Dad is the worst of all for putting me down
He’s yet to say ‘grow up, settle down, behave’, but I can read it in his looks. He seems to despise the fact that I should seek happiness in what I do with my day-to-day working life.
There are others, I know, who would despair of me in that respect those who are similarly getting nowhere (or somewhere slowly) are my best allies: Ian Singleton, Richard Johns, Susanna White.
Miller, H.V Sexus: Book one of the Rosy Crucifixion (1949)