Beyond the oldest apple trees
The waiting princess weeps
And curled around with head on knees
The silver dragon sleeps.
For what is life, or death, or chance?
What but a fairy-tale?
Where wizard’s word or bold knight’s lance
May win that maiden frail.
When this is known throughout the land
What must a questor do
But win the princess’s lovely hand
And half-a-kingdom too.
For blood’s a beauteous, blushing, red,
And every witch a crone,
And good folk never end up dead,
Nor bad ones on the throne.
While piles of bones adorn the ground
And quests take those who dare,
And grown-up women can’t be found,
And life is always fair.
And apples are so innocent,
Hanging there courteously,
But princesses whose tears are spent
May set the dragon free.
15th March 2007