Adaptive

In the famous paintings portraying
Saint George slaying the dragon,
the poor beast is such a small creature—
maybe the size of an elkhound
or a mountain lion—
that I assign the label Monster
to the man on horseback
though I know the image is metaphorical
about the passage from adolescent
to adulthood for both the man
and the woman being rescued
from the jaws that bite and tear away
the innocence of childhood.

As the world grew and progressed
through the centuries,
the dragon increased in size and ferocity
and gained the ability to fly
and breathe great jets of flame
and lay waste to an entire countryside
just as Man’s wars grew
in the same way.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney

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