"ALL night the flares go up; the Dragon sings
And beats upon the dark with furious wings ..."
By Micheal Whelan
By Jeff Easley
The Dragon of Wantley
Old stories tell, how Hercules
A dragon slew at Lerna,
With seven heads, and fourteen eyes,
To see and well discern-a:
But he had a club, this dragon to drub,
Or hehad ne'er done it, I warrant ye:
But More of More Hall, with nothing at all,
He slew the dragon of Wantley.
This dragon had two furious wings,
One upon each shoulder;
With a sting in his tail, as long as a flail,
Whitch made him bolder and bolder.
He had long claws, and in his jaws
Four-and-forty teeth of iron;
With a hide as tough as any buff,
And as strong as the jaws of a lion.
Have you not heard how the Trojan horse
Held seventy men in his belly?
This dragon was not quite so big,
But very near, I'll tell ye.
Devoured he poor children three,
That could not with him grapple,
And at one sup he ate them up,
As one would eat an apple.
All sorts of cattle this dragon did eat:
Some say he ate up trees,
And that the forests sure he would
Devour up by degrees:
Houses and churches like geese and turkeys
He ate all and left nothing behind
But some stones, dear Jack, that he could not crack,
Whitch on the hills you will find.
Hard by furious knight there dwelt,
Men, women, girls, and boys,
Sighing and sobbing, they came to his lodging,
And made a hideous noise:
"O save us all, More of More Hall,
Thou peerless knight of these woods;
Do but slay this dragon, who won't leave us rag on,
We'll give thee all our goods."
This being done, he did engage
To hew the dragon down;
But first he went new armor to
Bespeak at Sheffield twon;
With spikes all about, not within but without,
Of steel so sharp and strong;
Both behind and before, arms, legs, and all o'er,
Some five or six inches long.
Had you but seen him in this dress,
How fierce h looked and how big,
You would have thought him for to be
Some Egyptian porcupig:
He frightened all, cats, dogs and all,
Each cow, each horse, and each hog:
For fear they did flee, for they took him to be
Some strange, outlandish hedgehog.
To see this fight all people then
Got up on trees and houses,
On churches some, and chimneys too;
But these put on thier trousers,
Not to spoil their hose. As soon as he rose,
To make him strong and mighty,
He drank, by the tale, six pots of ale
And a quart of aqua vitae.
It is not strength that always wins,
For wit doth strenght excel;
Which made our cunning champion
Creep down into a well;
Where he did think, this dragon would drink,
And so he did in truth;
And as he stooped low, he rose up and cried "Boo!"
And hit him in the mouth.
"Oh" quoth the dragon "come out, my man,
Thou disturb'st me in my drink."
And then he turned and breathed fire at him:
But brave knight did not shrink.
"Beshrew thy soul, thy body's foul,
Thy breath smells not like balsam;
Thou evil beast with stifling breath,
Sure thy diet is unwholesome."
Our politic knight, on the other side,
Crept out upon the brink,
And gave the dragon such a douse,
He knew not what to think:
"By Jove," quoth he, "say you so, do you see?"
And then at him he let fly,
With hand and with foot, and so they went to't;
And the word it was, Hey, boys, hey!
"Your words,"quoth the dragon "I don't understand."
Then to it they fell at all,
Like to wild boars so fierce, if I may
Compare great things with small.
Two days and a night, with this dragon did fight
Our champion on the ground;
Tho' their strength it was great, their skill it was neat,
They never had one wound.
At length the hard earth began to quake,
The dragon gave him a knock,
Which made him to reel, and straightway he though,
To lift him as high as a rock,
And thence let him fall. But More of More Hall,
Life a valiant knight in his pride,
As he came like a lout, so he turned him about,
And gave him a blow in the side.
"Oh" quoth the dragon, with a deep sigh,
And turned six times togeather,
Sobbing and tearing, cursing and swearing
Out of his throat of leather;
"More of More Hall! O thou rascal!
Would I had seen thee never;
With th thing at thy foot, thou hast slain me at the root,
And I'm quite undone forever."
"Murder, murder." the dragon cried,
"Alack, alack for greif;
Had you but missed that place, you could
Have done me no mischief."
Then his head he shaken, trembles, and quaked,
And down he laid and cried;
First on one knee, then on back tumbled he,
So groaned, kicked, shuddered, and died.
By Keith Parkinson
Some how I lost the border on this table.. any clues??
Any suggestions would be appreciated! **S**