One of my professors likes to remind the class that our favorite authors would not have liked us, had we ever met. “Don’t kid yourselves,” he says, “Virginia Woolf and Jane Austen would not be your friends. They would not invite you round for tea. You are uncouth youthful boors from the underclasses and these women would find you repellent.”
I just finished watching an hour-long video interview with my best friend Anais Nin and have realized that I would never have been her best friend, not in a million years. I can hear her reading the entry about me aloud in her furry accent: “Have just met an aspiring writer. She has been packed half-full of science by her lover and does not understand the self, the vital internal self, the rich tapestry of the unconscious. She sneers at analysis. Every writer must undergo analysis, especially a woman, whose power comes from her deeper self. Also, she dresses like a schoolchild.”
It’s true, I’m neither fish nor fowl these days. And if I go over completely to this fully rational world of the Woods, how can I remain my mother’s daughter, when our family legends read like a magical realism novel? How can I remain the literary daughter of Anais Nin? I’m making a move to throw off this half-worn mantle of reason. Back to massage school, back to D.H. Lawrence, back to Anais, back to crystals. I can’t live in the Woods.
[I still live with a Wood though. Stay tuned for Healing Energy vs. Richard Dawkins train wrecks.]