St. George

What happened to you after you killed the Dragon?

Why are you here, in this isolated place?

Is it true what they say?

That you are a man haunted by demons?

treepoem

§

They still recall your feat.

You on the rearing steed, and at the last the monster smitten, dying.

It is then they claim, the witches, the seers, that she maimed you.

‘Dragon’s blood’.

Seeping into your wounds as you bent and wrestled with the thrashing foe.

§

You were shunned.

I would give it back to you, your youth.

Once you had dreams.

In those daydreams, you were a hero, and villagers clutched at you, begged for help.

In those days, you chased brigands, protected farmsteads, maidens.

But no Dragons.

Dragons were in the South.

§

One day you went South.

Your vanity headed the pleas for help.

I am the one, you told yourself.

§

You imagined ribboned garlands round your shoulders, bouquets, banquets if you killed the Dragon.

§

It took all you had, and you have never been so scared.

Huge, majestic, golden.

You loved the creature, even in your fear,

so now they whisper

‘Dragon’s blood.’

§

“It was this that did it,” the man said, pointing at the fire, the bellows.

You had gone to the Blacksmith, asked for help with your poor pennies, to shoe your horse, but the sparks flew upward.

They found you hours later, alone, muttering.

They restored to you your horse, which is something.

§

Now you live alone in the woods.

They know the price you paid.  But what can they do?

§

They dragged the carcass to the lake, but no-one will swim near, and it has been buried there some years now.

Rotting in the water, the bones exposed.

You know it was real, but sometimes you cannot quite believe such a creature could exist..a figment of fairytales, nightmares.

§

Does this have  a name, this suffering?

You seek solitude, but the past will not let you go.

You cannot live on charity, there is little to be had.

They fear you, the blood, the rage of you, the rearing steed.

No man who witnessed this can ever forget, the act of murder.

And neither can you.

§§§

This is a story about St. George which asks what happened to him after he killed the Dragon.

It is also a story about life after mental illness.

§

I am still am trying to understand life after mental illness, but it is a challenge, and not exactly what I had imagined or hoped.

§§

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