I am ten, watching my father
prick his finger with a lancet.
The blood on the tip of a white
testing strip forms a crown, a bubble,
and balances there like a jewel
developing slowly like a Polaroid,
the red turning dark as rust. I stare
to find the picture in it, wonder what face
might emerge from the stain, the secret
message meant only for me, but he wipes
it clean and a light hue of blue appears.
I witness magic--his blood
turns the color of sky--and then
I feel it: this has nothing to do with me.
My father is human, fragile even, the blood
coursing through him a spectrum of blue.