"Vivid with specifics, with instances of lived experience, this is a work firmly rooted in an earth that is itself unstable. Meadows explores that instability, explores our own complicity, and yet with a generosity that seeks to embrace rather than to blame, and through that embrace, to achieve a more exacting engagement with contemporary cultural and ecological tensions. Through her evocative, kaleidoscopic phrasing, we're witnesses to a meticulous yet rangy accounting that demonstrates how language can be used to create new modes of accountability."—Cole Swensen
"The melancholy of a particularly cerebral struggle with the political, artistic self or selves is the dominant, rich tone of this book. Meadows's 'recuperative theater' (as she describes it) presents a broken world with cinematic flair—'water treatment doesn't work... people as pulled dandelions, for / mundane weeds, not people (in the manner of) unsettled nostalgia'—and is global in scope, perspectives ever-shifting as her meditations are turned askew by the pulses of the news, her own notes as a fraught witness, and a pantheon of unnamed voices. Art, literature, theater—Malevich and Sam Shepard are just the extremes of artists considered here—are particularly subject to Meadows's phrase-based, 'disjunctive' (as we used to say) poetry but somehow integrated into the flux of struggle at the borders of empire: 'Where was Blake when we needed him? daughters of Albion living in tents in Samoa, South Africa, Trobriand Islands.' Meadows just seems on the go—these poems describe activities, working with materials, whether of the world or thought—'How to let go of this world we love to see?' This is an exciting book that should work some magic on the 'theory-benumbed,' those 'vulnerable as molting lobsters' who 'could have been planning nonexistence for all the lack of enthusiasm.'"—Brian Kim Stefans
Poetry. California Interest.
Deborah Meadows grew up in Buffalo, NY in a working class family, attended SUNY, Buffalo, worked in factory and various manual labor, and in 1977 moved west to work in a poverty program after graduation. Deborah Meadows has lived with her husband Howard Stover near Los Angeles, California since 1986. Together they built a small house in the Piute mountains on weekends, and, separately, have worked on various peace and social justice issues. She teaches in the Liberal Studies department at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, where she has worked as a labor organizer on education equity issues, curates the Poetry and Jazz series for her students, participated in travel exchanges with writers in the campus' Cuba program, and contributed to curriculum design in the campus' interdisciplinary program.Author City: Los Angeles, CA USA