my dragon

She has no name; she has every name. She is un-nameable…
She is muscular & sleek; like a racehorse or a panther. Teeth, talons and wing spurs are curved and razor sharp; the gossamer membranes between her wing bones are untearable. Her colors are dark shades of red, green, blue & black. Metallic glimmers wax and wane with the cycles of the moon and the seasons.
When we are allies, she takes me to magical far-off places. Straddled on her back, we soar and rise and dip as the amazing landscape of our planets passes below us. Her strength is mine and together we vanquish marauders and assist those in need. Her breath of fire roasts my meals for the ultimate nourishment.
But sometimes she will turn on me with no provocation. She scorches and slices me then leaves me abandoned on a precipice in a desolate and ruined land. My struggle back to civilization can be long & tortuous.
I am learning that assistance is available at points along this exhausting trek; though the blindness resulting from her attacks can make it impossible to find.
At other times she sets me down gently in a comfortable and familiar forest grove then gracefully leaves for her solo escapades; perhaps migration for feeding & breeding? – it’s an unknowable mystery that resists investigation and is better left alone.
In this forest grove I may feast on nature’s bounty and rest in safety until it is time to venture onto one of the many pathways starts the next journey. Sometimes I will choose the well-beaten trails to populated locations. More and more often I take the road less traveled, occasionally cutting new paths to find the undiscovered places.
Both commonly- and lesser-used paths may turn mucky and have qualities of quicksand. One must divert or double-back to avoid the point of no return.
Or the surface may be composed of sharp rock that pains the feet and distracts the mind.
The soft mossy trails with a gently gurgling stream meandering alongside are the ones that make the heart sing, but as evening approaches, the singing is drowned out by the buzzing of mosquitoes; so I build a fire to keep them back; and, if I am lucky, the fire signals her to return and so we renew our ongoing reciprocation of joy and despair, power and pain, knowledge and blindness, and every other swing of the pendulum of this thing called life.…