Okay I’ll write a proper introduction to this once i get a chance – but it’s my Short Story/Spoken word piece from the last BeSpeak – neither me nor it have quite decided what it should be yet, so i am probably going to end up working on several versions of it. It’s about Dragons, and Saints, and Rural Somerset. Also Magic, everybody loves a bit of magic.
My home-town used to have a dragon problem. It’s close enough to Wales that in ancient times they used to filter through – though never the large ones, just small things. The Size of a small cat. We never had a problem with them until she came to us. She told us they were the devils work. She was charismatic, holier than-thou and bold. She also had a little of the old magicks about her, or with her. We had just a sprinkling of our magic left, but she glowed.
Our magic was a wrong kind of magic, she told us. You still see it sometimes, in the Somerset countryside. Rolling hills and fairy copses in woodland – though the farmers keep it quiet – she taught us to be careful of strangers if we wanted to protect our secrets. There’s a certain mystique in a cider orchard, a creek next to a cow field or those ever rolling hills at sunset. It’s unlike anything else, though it’s just a glimmer . It sneaks into the cities sometimes too, there are parts of Bath and Bristol at night that still have a bit of countryside magic.
It’s more prevalent in the small towns and villages – the ones that have been there for as long as memory lasts and longer. It’s noticeable more on Autumn days when the wind blows through the hedgerows. It’s in the winding back roads and the sparkle of the fading daylight.
Back to Keyna – and the place that was my hometown, though many years before I was born.
She came to kill the snakes, as they’d done over the water. Dragons were uncouth remnants of a time long past, and they made us too much apart from the rest of the people.
She killed them, but not callously. She turned them to Stone. The stone we used to build our houses.
They’re still there. Though we call them snakes now – that’s how much the legend has diluted, but we remember her – we named our town after her. Even though she took the magicks away – we remember her as the reason our town is safe, rather than a thief of magic.
She was strong, charismatic and she took our magick away.
When she left, She left us her name. Dragon Slayers never stay, they’re never needed for long.
She left Dragons in the foundations and the walls of our town.
Their Spirits still echo on the evening breeze, casting their magic over our part of rural Somerset.
She Killed them…
We.. Killed them.
But they remain.
There are Dragons in the Foundations of our Houses, Wings and Breath Stolen by Stone.
Our Town is built from dragon bones,
Bridges made of magic
We built our town on Blood & Bone
Our footsteps Ring on those who came before
Though We Killed the Dragons
They Still Breathe and Roar.