Manda Frederick holds an M.F.A in Creative Nonfiction from the Inland Northwest Center for Writers and recently completed an MA in Literary Studies from Western Washington University. Manda has published nonfiction in the White Whale Review and Switchback magazine. Manda’s essay “The Saw Tooth” was a finalist published for Adventum Magazine’s 2011 Ridge to River contest, and Manda’s essay “Relative Effort” was a finalist in the 2011 Press 53 Open Award for creative nonfiction. Manda’s poems have appeared in: The Way North: Collected Upper Peninsula New Works (Wayne State UP, 2013), The Cancer Poetry Project, Sierra Nevada Review, Muse & Stone, Love Notes: An Anthology of Romantic Poetry (Vagabondage Press, 2012), Press 53 Open Awards Anthology (Press 53, 2011), Iron Horse Literary Review, and Stirring. Manda is the winner of the 2011 Press 53 Open Award for poetry with three of her poems published in the winners’ anthology.
Though he now occupies another coast
some 3,000 miles away,
I feel his shape because I feel my own,
split from his, hot about the edges
Beneath this bed, I feel three stories of house
pushing up, and I think I see
one side rising without any weight
to hold it down. I wake
and it seems the whole bed trembles—
yes, it is trembling;
I later learn
this is a kind of night terror—
not the white woman
at the foot of your bed or
a dream so real you throw yourself
from a window, but stress so subterranean
in your body that your mind cannot see
it is you who causes these frightening quakes.
You turn on the light; the bed is shaking.
You strike the frame; the bed is shaking.
You call out for a ghost; the bed is shaking.
So you lay down, close your eyes,
wait for your world to come to a rest,
something sure enough to stand on.