a passage from The Dragon Epic by Thomas Davis
Ruarther stopped his struggling inside
The golden dragon’s claws. They did not bite
Into his flesh or even make him feel
Uncomfortable, although the ground below
Sped by so fast it made his stomach churn.
He looked at how the other dragons flew,
Their eyes intense upon horizons set
Beyond his human sight, and looked in wonder
At how the human dragon with her scales
So bright with rainbow light it hurt his eyes
Flew like the dragons flew, her wings a steady
Beat, driving her toward the village where
Her father’s death had made her mother flee.
The spirit bear was just behind him, surfing
An eddy from the world of whirling vortex.
Behind him weirding bridging life and death
Swirled madly in the morning’s normal skies,
A song unnatural within the world,
A wrongness brought to life upon a day
Unlike another day from history.
Ruarther held his self, inside the talons.
Inviolate from spirit bear possession.
What was a human man, who’d lived the wrongness
That he had lived, do when a dragon grabbed
Him, lifted him to flight, and let him live
In spite of all the evil that he’d done?
He looked toward the human rainbow dragon
And wondered why he’d been fanatically
Determined that she had to die if humans
Were destined to continue with their stories.
The cold miasma following their flight
Was like a nightmare, troubling the madness
Inside the morning’s skies and shining light.
He kept himself as still as possible.
The golden dragon’s flight was way too high
To fall from if he valued living life.
Without a weapon, what role could he play
If he was dropped inside the village fighting
Against the ravages of dragon war?
The clashing din of war was obvious
Before Ssruuanne could see the devastation
She sensed as dragons battled villagers.
Then Mirrimann’s wings started moving faster.
A violet dragon, Sshisshiton, who’d left
The conclave he had called to end the madness
Sshruunak had generated from his rage,
Was on the ground, her wounds so great she drooped
Her head and did not look to see the sky
Completely full of dragons from the caves.
The tension in Ssruuanne reflected sounds
of battle now so loud it innudated
The universe and silenced miasma’s song
That followed them toward the tragedy
Now raging at the human’s small stone village.
Below her dire wolves howled to smell the blood
Of dragons and their human foes in air.
Then Mirrimann roared louder than he’d known
That he could roar. The other dragons echoed
The power inside Mirrimann as dragons
Aflame from burning human arrows danced
In skies and plunged toward the human archers
That bent their bows and sent their deadly flame
Into the scales of dragon hides, pain roiling
The dragons and the humans as they died
From injuries inflicted by Sshruunak’s
Mad war that had no chance for victory.
A dragon flung a human archer high
Into the air as roaring filled the skies.
Miasma’s silent roar of sound entwined
Into the battle’s roar, the dragon’s roaring,
And seemed to leap toward the chaos raging
Above the cottages and forest trees.
Deep in Ssruanne she felt the prophecy
That Mmirrimann had said in conclave, warning
About extinction for the dragon race.
She keened her sorrow at the sight of dragons
And humans battling toward their deaths.
Her keening made Ruarther, held by talons,
Squirm, trying to escape her talons’ grip.
Enraged, an ancient dragon male who’d led
The mountain dragons during all their years
Of peace inside the caves, a hurtling Mmirrimann
Flew like an arrow at Sshruunak’s black scales.
The coal black dragon felt his leader’s charge
And turned toward the threat he’d never thought
He’d have to face, his belly scales on fire,
His pain and rage so great the world seemed red
And violent in a mind unhooked from thought.
Miasma flowed toward the battlefield.
Once living spirits teemed and swirled in clouds
Of mourning, searching for the living light
Where absolution could absolve their spirits
Of darkness and the flowing cauldron central
To individuality’s privation.
The earth quaked in the shivering blood calls
From dire wolves’s gleaming, hungry, dull red eyes.
To listen to this passage, click on Confrontation
Note: This is the forty fourth passage of a long narrative poem, which has grown into The Dragon Epic. Originally inspired by John Keats’ long narrative poem, Lamia, it tells a story set in ancient times when dragons and humans were at peace. Click on the numbers below to reach other sections, or go to the Categories box to the right under The Dragon Epic. Click on Dragonflies, Dragons and Her Mother’s Death to go to the beginning and read forward. Go to The Dire Wolves to read the passage before this one. To read the passage after this one, click on Before the End of the World.