Opus 1810

Phillip A. Ellis

Under the breezes the nigrescent falcons fly,
solitary birds inhabiting the blank sky
with their cries of "Kerk! Kerk!" Then they pass, twisting down
as the aerial behemoth, hovering brown
and baked as the mountains far below, passes, groans
escaping low from its mouth. Its gas-bearing bones
creak audibly; it is the size and shape of whales,
yet it moves, not by swimming, but osseous sails.

Only those dragons that live in the upper air
consider these behemoths. They certainly care:
their spittle-glued cloud-caves break apart, and their young
(who have yet to fly) fall to their death. When they've sung
mourning enough, they fly forth for vengeance. They rip
off the behemoth's sails, the behemoth drifts, dripping
blood below, a rain black and painful. The drakes
return to make new caves, for their anger is slaked

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