“I had a feeling that Pandora’s box contained the mysteries of woman’s sensuality, so different from a man’s and for which man’s language was so inadequate. The language of sex had yet to be invented. The language of the senses was yet to be explored.”― Anaïs Nin, from Delta of Venus
For as long as I can remember, I have been enamoured of Anaïs Nin. I loved her spirit and her wild abandon, her love for language, and her refusal to live in a world that would not let her feel. I admired how open she was when writing about sex, especially from a female point of view.
That being said, this is not to say that Ms. Nin didn’t have her fair share of critics—she was viewed as an oddity during her time, not to mention controversial and polarising. While she supported a lot of careers, most especially her lover Henry Miller’s, her own writing was largely overlooked, and sometimes derided. For who could ever consume the lifeblood of dreams and depths, of the carnal and the erotic, better and other than the woman who lived them?
When I found her diaries at a young age I thought I was reading about my life—I thought I had entered another realm, and I was merely standing outside myself watching someone write word after word after word of how it is to be here, in this universe that chafes.
Anaïs taught me that I have a voice that I shouldn’t be afraid to use, and that I have a body that I should celebrate. Most importantly she showed me that there exists somewhere a world beyond what we know of this one, a place largely created for men, and that space is something I need to create for myself.
This journal is an investigation of my madnesses and my appetites, an odyssey and a wandering, both.