Emerging from the steaming cleft,
he drags his plated belly
over ferns and ledges toward the freezing light.
Slack lids part, black eyes glint like opals.
His purple foreclaws hook the canyon's lip
and haul his ivy-green worm's length
up over a dry stream bed of congealed agate,
through blackened trees and heaps of bones.
All he knows is his treasure catalogue:
amethyst, beryl, chalcedony, diamond
and a hunger for more that propels his wings
to stretch out in accordion folds.
Loose scales clatter. With a circus tent
he stokes his iron stomach then explodes
like a grasshopper out of the canyon.
His great wings stroke like oars.
Planing over pastures, he eyes thatched roofs
then spots a manor. Swooping, he vomits flame
like sheet lightning to cordon the house.
Palms pressed to windows are branded by molten glass.
Those caught in the cellar shriek then
Men are so pathetic. In the settling
stands a strongbox. He rakes it open.
It contains only papers and a yellowed wedding dress.
Angry, he eats the fleeing wife first,
storing her paltry wedding band inside his
Though hardly worth swallowing, it is gold.
If you've any comments on his poem, C.E.Chaffin would
be pleased to hear from you.