Catching Dragonflies

Me and my childhood mates

In the sun filled days

We caught dragonflies in fields

Where the grass grew to our chins

and boasted the most colourful–  

broad winged dragonflies

which we tied on string leashes

to watch them fly in bondage

we were the dragon lords

who ruled those fields

and there marked our territories

claimed every passing car on the dirt road

and played hide and seek

in the overgrown weeds and thickets

*

I saw a former playmate today

from a distance in the city streets

in the finest array of garments

a car sleeker than those we claimed

and a lovely companion in hand

looking like the true dragon lord

but there are no dragonflies in this city

and no tall weeds and thickets for hiding

since misery has me on a leash

I turned on the next dingy back alley

to hide my torn shoes and faded coat

and in that blind haste I tripped on a beggar’s bowl