I hunted dragons once. Courting danger,
Armed with nothing but a net, my hands, a jam jar,
I ventured onto wastelands alone, a stranger
To my primeval prey, a knight to war.
Winged beasties, flitting over hard-baked earth,
Seeking scrubby growth for landing strips:
I stalked them, watched them pause and barely stir,
Balanced on stalks of grass, suspended on the lips
Of pools (putrid, slick with slime like Grendel’s lair),
Their rainbow iridescence, blues and reds
And greens and mauves, upheld by filigreed air,
Their slender bodies capped by swivel heads.
I caught these wonders, cupped them in my hands,
Transferred them into glass-walled living rooms,
Grass-filled their glamorous future homelands,
Never thinking these would be their tombs.
I hunted dragons once, so wanting thus to be
Protective. But they wanted to be free.