4. An Encounter with the Girl

A monster of great antiquity, I found
she had an animal anatomy — covered
in fur not visible from a distance;

Vair; Vair of Four Tinctures; Vair in Pale.

Her colours impaled, her ribbons now infulae,
she talks in Blazon
with deep comely eyes
her sleeve, maunch langued. She picks at me
'with dreadful swiftness'
issuing flames and smoke. She spits fires.

The vapours are of a sweet nature.

Fragrant breath.

And so I throw down a looking glass,
as directed, scatter salt, cajole,
call her attention to her charms, auras and skills

and I admire her as she purrs.

Slender, horse-like, with tusks.

Implacable beast she is
a fierce and loathsome bird of prey
with her wings disclosed
close volant and erased.

Potent from the crutch, her oppressed charge
responding well to
a wild man rampant or regardant.

                She nods with her antlers
                which take the form
                of oak leaves, all feminine

Hold a cudgel on your knees,
the cock is still a favourite motif.

Lured into captivity, she hugs me suddenly,
her salient coils
and foreleg claws —
small, delicate but ferocious —
caught in issues of control.

This is where I cross, she says,
changing utterly.

So she will lay down, her magic everywhere revealed.

                You can prove the authenticity,
                she has a heart of gold
                possess this membered Or
                the virtue is to know.