Henry Miller: The Confidence to Utter Profound Truths

Henry Miller 1940
Image via Wikipedia

Henry Miller’s writing has been an inspiration since the first time I read “Tropic of Cancer.”   I can’t say I always understand him, and there are times I shake my head and say, “Huh?”  But I keep reading because his writing is powerfully vivid, filled with energy and raucous life.

His work isn’t always happy; sometimes it’s gritty or gross, but it’s joyful in it’s passion, and I find the energy contagious.

In honor of Mr. Miller’s birthday today (December 26, 1891), I’m sharing this  quote from “Henry Miller On Writing.”   I find it so inspiring I want to tell all my writer friends … Print it out and post it on your computer, use it as a bookmark, frame it, sing it.  Do whatever you want with it, just don’t forget it.

Every day we slaughter our finest impulses.   That is why we get a heartache when we read those lines written by the hand of a master and recognize them as our own, as the tender shoots which we stifled because we lacked the faith to believe in our own powers, our own criterion of truth and beauty.   Every man, when he gets quiet, when he becomes desperately honest with himself, is capable of uttering profound truths.   We all derive from the same source.   There is no mystery about the origin of things.   We are all part of creation, all kings, all poets, all musicians; we have only to open up, only to discover what is already there.”


5 thoughts on “Henry Miller: The Confidence to Utter Profound Truths

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this quote Olivia, I love it! I will definitely print it and hang it on my inspiration board above my desk.

    I feel the same as you concerning Henry Miller’s works – they can often be hard to understand, but, as you say, so full of energy, the perfect description.

    I hope you had a marvelous Christmas!

  2. Yes! That lack of faith is so destructive. Everything we need is there; just have to listen and allow it to surface.

    Will print out and look at every day. Thanks for the gift, Olivia. Hope you are well and that the new year brings nothing but the best for you! 🙂

  3. Thanks for that amazing quote! I really needed that.

    Henry Miller is someone I would like to read soon. I also think of the Seinfeld episode where Jerry had the Topic of Cancer (or Capricorn) checked out for about 20-30 years and tried to return it.

    Happy New Year to you!

  4. Hi Olivia! first Happy new Year to you- thanks for this inspiring quote…it really is a reminder I need to read. It makes me think about all our creative impulses, and other ones, stifled , perhaps at some earlt age, and how we need to re-learn trust in ourselves.
    Thanks again
    p.s. Like Anne it immediately reminded me of that episode , which was one of the funniest!

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