I met a dragon.
It’s one of the dragons
who live in our neighborhood.
I heard him the other
out by the curb. I mistook
the sound for a neighbor shoveling
snow, you know, the rhythmic rasping
a shovel makes on pavement.
“How are you doing?” I asked.
“Not bad,” he replied. “Yourself?”
He looked roughly fifteen feet long
from our tree to the corner, covered
with green metallic scales and a tail
that ended in a flared point like the ace of spades
in a deck of cards.
When he blinked a play of electricity flashed
around his eyes like Christmas lights
in the daytime.
“Mind if I rest here?” he asked.
“Go ahead,” I said. “I can see you’re draggin’.”
He ignored the remark.
Dragons get all kinds.
“Want your walk cleared?” he asked.
“I can handle it,” I said. I pantomimed shoveling snow.
Like I said.
His breath cleared snow and ice all the way to the neighbor’s
drive. “No charge,” he said. “My card.”
Incendiary Snow Removal, LLC.
I got this idea.
“Ever think of maybe taking on a partner?” I asked.
He gave me a long look.
About fifteen feet long.
“I’m a knight,” I added.
He belched a snort of black smoke.
I detected pessimism and a distinct
whiff of sulphur.
“That’s the point,” I ventured. “It’s unique, a novelty,
a first in the annals of lore and legend. What an angle!
“I’m Dubious,” said the dragon. I held out my hand.
“Glad to meet you, I’m Lance.”
“What could go wrong?”
We hit it off.
There’s like zero market
for damsels in distress and snow removal is seasonal,
so Dubious and me set ourselves up as a 501(c)(3)
serving Culture War veterans,
unemployed, disadvantaged and homeless
victims of PTS, Proud Though Subdued syndrome.
Dragons and Knights Unite!
Together Through the Dark Ages.