The Book that inspired me to write was Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer. Although I was disturbed by Miller’s male-chauvinist statements, his passionate love of life and writing filled me with a deep desire to write.
In the introduction to this book, Poet Karl Shapiro calls Miller “The greatest living Author.”
Much of Miller’s work was banned because he wrote freely of sex. Most of my books have been about saints, What Mother Teresa Taught Me, Mother Teresa, Called to Love, and Saints of Molokai.
Miller put a series of incompatible words together and created wisdom. “Man is not at home in the universe. The deepest question is why. The very asking is cosmic sabotage.”
His vocabulary is intense and shocking. “I will give you Horatio Alger as he looks the day after the Apocalypse, when all the stink has cleared away.” He writes with a vengeance.
He wrote, “I have no money, no resources, no hopes. I am the happiest man alive.”
A radical optimist, he kept his joy no matter how difficult his life became.
His goal was not to write about the erotic but to describe the whole truth of life as he knew it.
He managed to see and share beauty and joy in the slums or even in sewers.
But he found repugnant a world paralyzed by traditional gross caricatures posing as truth. He described Myrtle Avenue in New York City as “full of the magnificent emptiness of progress and enlightenment, emptier than a vacuum, emptier than the word God in the mouth of an unbeliever.”
His work is powerfully visual. He piles incompatible word on incompatible word as a painter uses paint creating fantastic visions.
Every time I read Miller I am torn between continuing to read his compelling words and putting my book down to run to my computer and write my own stories.