It crawls – more like a slither, for its legs
are short and curled beneath its awkward bulk –
and in this ambulation, leaves a trail:
rough scales, small bits of food, and rivulets
of an almost translucent, greasy sweat.
Its mouth is lined with narrow, pointed teeth
inside an almost rubber lipped, wide mouth
that hangs always a little bit ajar
exposing just the tip of a great tongue
in constant motion, keeping those teeth clean.
Its voice is half a bellow, half a cry,
that with torrential drops of fetid bile
hurls insults at both enemy and friend
when it perceives even the smallest slight,
and sounds both most insulted and in pain.
Its attitude, in short, is rude and mean;
yet ’round it gather minions by the score.
They hope to catch the scraps it leaves behind
from tainted prey, or the effluvia
that trickles from its pores both night and day.
It once was something else, and stood upright;
or so the legends say – though few have seen
and lived to tell the tale.
17 JAN 2017