Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Henry Miller


It had been many years since I last read a novel by Henry Miller, but having recently finished Nexus, the second part of his Rosy Crucifixion, I can safely say that I've jumped right back in. There really is nothing like Miller when he launches into a meditation on the debauched or neglected. Nexus is not Cancer or Capricorn, but then, I don't think Miller intended it to be. Nexus is, instead, a reflection on those critical years before leaving for Europe, before assuming his badge as an expatriate. Nexus is odd in this way: it has more plot, more linearity than Miller introduces elsewhere. But that is not a critique: Nexus reveals a more restrained Miller, but not one without literary merit. There are parts of Nexus where Miller simply seems to speak for me: his reflections anticipate my own; his observations approach mine. This is the universal quality that Miller seems to have achieved in so many of his works: this tendency to write for us, on behalf of us. Miller has much to say, and not all of it focuses on sexuality. Indeed, Nexus is a book largely devoid of this topic. But still, Miller's reflections are direct and profound -- and transcendent, too. He aspires to the angels, and there are moment when he undoubtedly reaches them. "But then a queen steps so lightly," he writes, "even when crushing a louse." It's good to be back!

No comments:

Post a Comment