“The Theory of “Subjectivity in Moby-Dick”







... ous author


the truth, let us do

let us correct the way

it miscarried the primitive


for a deviant, at first delay


come home

things are due


The ... ous author


Clear the whole

Clear where you wrote "that and what"


No blood is good blood

purchased with a Franklin.


all confess to whole adventures.




Chapter 1


Having little or no subjectivity

brought into the world carrying cargo

or amor or moral precept to the street.


Mount it high, this substitute for piracy

sought and Lenten, mid-town is the Bath

pooled and previous

Were lovers there

some afternoons?


Avenues, when awkward, peep, but the

haunches and plaster tied to what is gone:

How are the needles?

Once marketed for drakes, take whims

or experiments: metaphysical procedures

wedded to You (subjectivity, again)


The dreary sleep in the governor's cottage

amazing us with handfuls of silence,

refusals of purpose:

Why did the pillar go to brother's?

Must hearsay against others define Us?


Will Narcissus result in carnage, we should

shout that something is said about Image.

A purse is passé, don't general things

or something of everykind whatsoever say "myself."


Call me.





Of you. The topic in miniatures

& shards. Their huge night behind them

when "I," so to speak, "go to sea,"

I go by the royal dumb-down in the foyer

to make rosy shadows. Of you.


The tallest assume "you" with concoctions

of identity, but ever-alert, what about

-roon blood, old sea captains, cup & punch,

other kinds of servants of metaphysical



Whereas, "you" are never heard of.





Constant stands alone, free in pure air of stern

axioms far more private for their

atmosphere, Pythagorean violations.

Their stink of Fate that dogs me.


What better Whole is bloody as those stagnant

parts of circumstances which being

curated means the state, the ship

of state, Constant.





Chapter 2



inhaled reaching, followed by or tucked

in as most stop at this place.


A place of departure where headrests, sleep,

originals are required: cement

banisters merge public and private lives,

how can order disguise the bows, bowsprits, etc.


Frost lay. I said to myself, as towards

identity and self-naming, lower your bag

and cover the darkness toward

expensive pavements and pumice the

secret inwardness. It's all self, all

society, dreary streets and buses on from

here and hereafter. Moving

absorbs many of the works in public, so

encased in ashes, in poor boxes.


A common place. I muttered bathetic

entertainment by the weeping negro church.

I suppose I might look enough, seem

sufficient that tenting indoors, that judgment

more than ever divides. Matchless

is the miracle on the outside where the

window frosts only one-way. Northern

lights raise the dead man within, silken his

pillow lengthwise.

Now fiery, more of this scrape and plenty.





Chapter 3


Defaced by a system you could

unaccountably call the narrative portion

of the History of Art. Conflated with roadside

attractions, here's an idea as long

on authenticity as poems from a unified



Sublime as an oath --to be defaced,

unrecognizable, calling down

interpretation on oneself. Trembling

ivory, aggregates of artists' designs

aged and tinctured. With such low

sojourns, the long-arm of weeping

tyranny harvesting what years

afterwards entered the category "rare."


This mark, this soporific, that

clever way to make the product

look big. Take a seat. Good green

steaks, cramped and ragged, they

seed her. Frozen jackets, a good

full six days to express identity

by sleeping two in a bed. I'll try.

I pondered ...

I thought of ...

I did not know ...

the jumping off place to the outer

seas, the weather-side of structure,

unknown companions; evil suppositions

by Sunday awaken conclusions.

The clutter of implements mounted here

turn utility to historic trophy

to faceless, headless objects of conversation

barwise. What belongs to what? A pasture

for slander, this is me and my parts.

Unknown others are out of


sight, hence built on rumor

and imaginings.


It's time. Time divides sacred and

profane in this harbor. Young marriage,

damaged children. Satisfactory as a harpooneer,

I am never satisfied to hurry over

remembering pantaloons at last made

a good offing. It was cold.


His cheeks and marks might

be noticed, inklings of elsewhere,

canary effects of tomorrow. Squares

have a sameness, yet do they extend

or segregate ignorance? Patterns

provide a means, a similar manner

previous to frogs and strangers.


A polite manner can be a pattern, too.

An idol in ashes, a puffed out chest,

a blurry reading of the skin.


Your head. In the dark "I" yell

for coffin, for angels, for cloudy

reassurance because "I" have yet

to stop my old broken reading

that betrays "me" now.




Reprinted from Representing Absence ( Los Angeles: Green Integer, 2004). Copyright ©2004 by Deborah Meadows. Reprinted by permission of Green Integer Press.


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