Good for all time

Henry Miller’s Tropic of Capricorn is the book that opened me up to the world of art. What a treat it is, in Miller’s Letters to Emil, to find him discussing his thoughts about the writing of Capricornas he’s writing it!:

“What I am doing, if I can explain it, is to free myself for expression on a different, a higher (?) level. I am working out my own salvation, as writer, thinker, human being. I am working it off on the world […].”

“I’m writing for posterity, which is with us always in the shape of those who love us. […] I don’t give a fuck about being right, or artistic, or clear—I only care about what I’m saying for the moment. If I say that with passion and sincerity it’s good for all time.”

“And when you detect discrepancies in the narrative, lies, distortions, etc., don’t think it is bad memory—no it is quite deliberate, for where I go on to falsify I am in reality only extending the sphere of the real, carrying out the implicit truth in situations that life sometimes, and art most of the time, conceals. […] I am the most sincere liar that ever lived. You will see that. But to myself I lie almost negligibly. I am writing out of my system, wiping it out, as it were, all that kind of lying. That is the real purpose of art—among all its real purposes, which nobody understands anyway.”

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