A man who lived his life divinely, writer Henry Valentine Miller (1891-1980) was born and raised in New York. Known for his adventurous spirit, he learned to speak German before English and took the money his father saved for college to travel the southwest and Alaska.
"The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself," he believed.
In 1929, Miller ran a speakeasy in Greenwich Village, then moved to Paris for nine years where he published the semi-autobiographical novels Tropic of Cancer (1934) and Tropic of Capricorn (1938). Both unforgettable novels of self-confession were deemed pornographic and banned from publication in the United States until 1961.
"We live in the mind, in ideas, in fragments," he observed.
A major literary force of the 1950s and a mentor and lover to Anais Nin, he celebrated the self and senses with poetic and graphic realism. In breaking the barriers of sexual explicitness, he became a folk hero. "There can be no broadening on one's vision without a corresponding leap of love," he said.
Critic Edmund Wilson called Miller's narrative of the lost generation "the epitaph for the whole generation of American writers and artists that migrated to Paris after the war." Miller settled in Big Sur, California.
Miller wrote, "We create our fate every day."
Live with divine awareness!