The Art of Freezing by Martin J. Elster

The Art of Freezing

The art of freezing isn’t hard to master.
For tiny frogs as tough as I am, snow
or frost on naked skin is no disaster.

Winter’s icy fingers do not fluster
me in the least. Since I’ve no place to go,
the art freezing isn’t hard to master.

I am a frog-cicle. When blizzards bluster
and icicles’ long fangs begin to grow,
their nudge on naked skin is no disaster.

My ticker, as if made of alabaster,
stops beating. Then when runnels start to flow,
I melt, for melting isn’t hard to master.

While thawing, though I’d love to do it faster,
my heart once more starts ticking. I’m a pro
at freezing and defrosting. No disaster!

And you, by probing me, will come by vaster
knowledge of saving organs. You will know
the art of freezing isn’t hard to master,
that snow on naked skin is no disaster.

by Martin J. Elster

Editor’s Note: Anyone fond of Elizabeth Bishop’s “One Art” will find this villanelle an absolute delight.