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From the Fjords
Zachary Schomburg

I am wrapped only in a wet towel when the refrigerator general knocks on my door. I need to inspect your refrigerator he says. You can’t just go around inspecting people’s refrigerators I say, the cold air from the door on my flushed thighs. But, ma’am, I’m the refrigerator general he says. Well, may I see your identification? I ask. The refrigerator general digs around in his breast pocket and pulls out a card designed to look a little like a refrigerator. That’s very clever but I’m not sure it proves anything I say. Ma’am he says with urgency. He pushes open the door a little and steps inside. But I’m in my towel I say. Relax, ma’am, I’m a professional he says from the kitchen. But I don’t even have a refrigerator I say. Just as I suspected he says. I stand completely motionless in the corner of the kitchen and start humming. He stops writing his citation and stares at me, eyes like a bat’s eyes, the blood draining from his face. Ma’am? he asks. Ma’am? He tugs gently on my towel and looks inside. I can see it in his eyes, how he wants me to be something human.


I come down from the mountains carrying heavy refrigerator parts on my back and build a very large refrigerator. It is the largest refrigerator ever built, roughly fifteen to twenty times the size of an average refrigerator. I have built a very large refrigerator I announce to one woman who lives in a shack by the river. You may put anything you want in it I say. The woman who lives in the shack appears skeptical. Does it look like I have anything to refrigerate? she asks. Maybe not now I say but perhaps you could see the large refrigerator as a way to change your life. The woman who lives in a shack stares for a while, her face like a plate. I can tell she is really thinking about how the large refrigerator could change her life. Then, slowly, it begins to happen. The woman who lives in a shack looks to the top of the refrigerator which is peeking out over the trees in the distance, like a low white sun. Owwwwwooooooooooga owwwwoooooga! she howls. Change has come to the valley. Yes, owwwwoooooooga I say, my strong arms now around her waist, owwwwoooooooga.
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