I didn't see his snowy beard
and I completely ignored his face.
All my attention attached itself to his fingers
And all my thoughts--my vapor thoughts--condensed and settled
before my eyes and there they froze
Till they became glass, ice-glass, organic lenses to focus
--my insight and foresight and hindsight and true sight,
on the glass man's fingers.
They were mangled, the fingers, and gnarled
like charred stubs
of a paper tree--
--paper that had once held words
but is now
and chewed out.
And I watched through my marble-tear lenses
as he held up a pipe,
a solid affair of iron wood--mahogany--ordinary
and blew through it a ball of molten fire,
and, as I watched, the fire hardened,
into light and a heavy orb
of cranberry-orange ice.
But then I blinked,
and the vision shattered,
and my tears broke and the ice-shards clattered
as they hit my face.
A moment later they melted and the world dissolved
into marmalade skies and apple liqueur,
Because the glassblower had
fashioned, from ice, from sugar-dusted air,
and fingers broken and unrepaired,