Christine Stewart

We Pour So Much into the Making
by Christine Stewart-Nuñez

—Toledo’s Glass Pavilion

In this pavilion’s panes, shear
material folds like scrolls
of light, walls compress air.
Invisible pressure. Surfaces
reflect trees, the gauzy outlines
of ghosts, sunlight constellating
on square tiles. Glass begins
as flint, sand, or spar—a silicious
substance fused with a flux:
soda, sea salt, wood ash.
Artisans vitrify frit, convert
earth over crucibles of heat
to create transparent sheets
from pearlash, a word that only
sounds like ocean dust. Even
the architect knows panes
can fracture. Glass is fluid
liquid. Centuries reverse
perfect fusions, fired earth
becoming puddles of sand.

 

Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 15, Issue 4.

Christine Stewart-Nuñez

Christine Stewart-Nuñez is the author of Snow, Salt, Honey (2012); Keeping Them Alive (2011); Postcard on Parchment (2008); Unbound & Branded (2006); and The Love of Unreal Things (2005). Her piece “An Archeology of Secrets” was a Notable Essay in Best American Essays 2012. She teaches at South Dakota State University.

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