I’ve never told anyone this, but – Beth McDonough

I’ve never told anyone this, but

he was the dragon that no-one believed in,
ensconced on his too-grey rock.
Quite huge, in a gap of mazed whins,
doing his blinkless, very lizard thing. At me.

I was seven when we stopped, somewhere
in Dumfriesshire I think, coming home
from a Lake District stay. A picnic spot,
time for wander alone. Perhaps a pee.

He was the fat lizard who should never have been.
Escapee dragon, or mythical reptile, but
not your average, just over the border beast.
That’s a lamb. Or a shy adder maybe.

He was the dragon that no-one believes in,
because when you’re seven you have sense.
You wash your hands, go back to the car,
tell no-one of all the great dragons you’ve seen.

Beth McDonough’s work is often Tay-centric. She swims there, year round, and forages nearby. Her poetry is in numerous places; she reviews in DURA. In Handfast (with Ruth Aylett) she explored autism. Lamping for pickled fish is published by 4Word.

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