shadow play

          dragon awoke to see soon
          would be time for his parting

          as legends foretold, at first so
          the dragon thought,

          then realizing he was in fact
          a young boy waiting for
          his mother

          to return from market, then
          thought, no, he was seeing

          from inside her shoes
          as she wondered about
          carrots and rice

          and what her son was
          dreaming now, more

          than only her, but then
          suddenly she

          saw her son awaken,
          becoming a white butterfly

          in the Autumn garden.
          she watched him move
          far out of sight.

          Chō monogatari    蝶物語

          butterfly story, she smiles.   not a mask.

          when does it end?   she doesn’t say.

          who calls themselves, audience?

image:    The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun,
                 William Blake, National Gallery of Art

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