the house lived with me inside it

me   and a wall-eye

I refrained from fishing
for justice

we lived here in this country
all of us under one thing

pledging to stay under

all under one thing


take me over,
you wall-eye,


watch me coming and see


a storm is a solution


dashed down to the right
dashed under cloud cover
led everyone home


took over from the river


swallowed alone


in weather terms
we never got flooded


we saw it coming
and pre-fled


I sweated it out
to the ranger


I left him
to be


I lied and said
I was single
when I was only
camping alone


does my body
ever speak
for me
on purpose


what does anyone know
about the outdoors


I want to feel comfortable
in a woodland environment
in a natural skin


won’t you take me, ranger
won’t you ask my skin
to see


will you arrange me in this habitat


will my body
ever speak
to me


I pledge allegiance
to the end
of ice forms


I pledge to watch them tonight


meaning also
I don’t believe us
when we walk so far to say


we love those mammals
and we want to share them on this land


I dream you save them
by finding a new way to sell them
back to their companions


you exchange them fresh
on ice


I dream you tell me
you’ve got a mammal by the neck
and this is how you will keep him alive


I led in bed
on purpose


I asked
to be alone


I ascribed
to stripping


and so that makes me less
braver but lesser


I show it all
the excavated rock
eroded soil


I miss the mines


I forget they are not beautiful
what earth


is the earth
for my body

Leora Fridman is the author of Precious Coast (H_ngm_n B_ _ks), Obvious Metals (Projective Industries), On the architecture and Essential Nature (The New Megaphone), and Eduardo Milán: Poems (Toad Press). With Kelin Loe, she edits Spoke Too Soon: A Journal of the Longer. With media artist Liat Berdugo, energy specialist Joshua Finn, and scientist Shawn Manchester, she forms the collective The Bureau.