Draco swims in an ocean
of stars, coiling its monster tail
glittering one third of them
in the dark

Suns tremble fire embering night
but darkness is its shield

white hyper-giant, Thuban, pulses
luciferous light, it means “serpent-heart”

transformed, that Old Dragon
needs no wings
yet claims to be the prince of air

but Orion, the conquering Prince
swiftly comes charging over mountains,
to crush its head
and make the serpent-dragon flee



Leviathan plagues the seas
its serpentine body, wraps angels
thrashing the great expanse of ocean
into whitewashed foam

breathing flames, snorting smoke,
its armored body, impenetrable,

but has no heart, thumps
no mercy, only arrogance and pride

that great Livyatán
flies through ocean,
and king of the seas

dressed in glory by his brightness
the Light of the world streaks east to west
to break immortal Darkness,
              yes, compel it to flee

Written as a contrapuntal poem (cleave structure-three poems in one), "Dragons" is also an adaptation of Hebraic poetry, synthetic parallelism applied to each left and right pair of verses [instead of clauses within a verse]. Thuban is the brightest star in the constellation Draco; and Livyatán is the transliterated Hebrew word translated as Leviathan meaning a sea monster but described as a dragon, esp. in Job 41, which inspired this poem together with other Biblical references in the Books of Isaiah, Psalms, Thessalonians, and Revelations.

—John C. Mannone