Herman Melville: Moby Dick sans cashmere

for my dear xy

“as i sat there at my ease, cross-legged on the deck; after the bitter exertion at the windlass; under a blue tranquil sky; the ship under indolent sail, and gliding so serenely along; as i bathed my hands among those soft, gentle globules of infiltrated tissues, woven almost within the hour; as they richly broke to my fingers, and discharged all their opulence, like fully ripe grapes their wine; as i snuffed up that uncontaminated aroma, – literally and truly, like the smell of spring violets; i declare to you, that for the time i lived as in a musky meadow; i forgot all about our horrible oath; in that inexpressible sperm, i washed my hands and my heart of it; i almost began to credit the old paracelsan superstition that sperm is of rare virtue in allaying the heat of anger: while bathing in that bath, i felt divinely free from all ill-will, or petulance, or malice, of any sort whatsoever. amen.” – herman melville. by cm