O Drákos


On a howling, stormy night, a father fills with dread.
Like spoiled rich nobles, his children stuff themselves with bread.
As they lick up the crumbs, the father sighs,
beckoning to the children under watchful eyes.
“Off with you,” vies the mother. “Go cut us some wood!”
The children ride off with the father in the cart, shouting “We will be good!”

Off a ways the father nods and halts the wagon, saying
“Rest here for a moment, but watch out for the dragon.
I will be back, for game is near.
Hang back as I hunt for turkey and deer.”

The children agree, and off walks their father
disappearing into the darkness like a cow off to slaughter.
After a time, the children said, “Let us depart! We are of age.
After all, surely we’re clever enough to avert the beast’s rage?”

They took the cart with no remorse, prodding to speed the horse,
and trotted confidently through the forest until coming upon
the River of Kauors.

There they saw a large cottage across the way,
and an old man sitting outside, eating curdles of whey.
“Good morrow!” he shouted, setting his meal aside.
“You must be hungry, dear children, won’t you come inside?”

The gluttons delighted, and inside they went of course.
The old man transformed into a dragon and roared,
“You must excuse the stench, dear children,
for I’ve just finished cooking your father’s corpse.”

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