On solo strolls through the suburbs of Bethesda,
I can’t help but notice a newly hatched dragon
has attached himself to my right trouser leg.
He’s light, not quite three pounds,
and his claws aren’t too sharp
when he grips around my calf for a ride.
He will dash into the shrubs
if we ever see a fox,
then scurry with a huff, to latch back on.
I’ve never seen him fully,
just his scaly golden tail when it drapes
over the ankle of my boot.
And sometimes I’ll get a whiff
of butane, like a lighter not quite catching
when he’s practicing his flames.
The neighbors never see him, or at least
pretend they don’t. But babies in strollers
sit bolt upright and point.
I think children, like dogs, sniff out illness,
they can find what’s not quite right. But I’ve no idea
how long he’ll stay or how big he’ll get.
About the author:
Marie-Louise received her MFA from MMU in 2020 after a brain tumour diagnosis in 2018. She was a winner in the Poetry News' "Lesser Loss" competition and her poems can be found in Stand, Agenda, Acumen, Portland Review, Poetry Magazine and the competition anthologies for the Bridport, Bedford, Live Canon and Ginkgo AONB prizes. Originally from London she lives in the USA with her young family.
Discussing disabled characters in fairy tales and folklore!