It was just another trinket,
In the foreign peddler's pack,
But once Herifa held it,
She could not put it back.
Its curving jagged edge,
Held a glittering diamond gleam.
While its silken ivory surface,
Glowed with a pearly sheen.
A quarter of its value,
Were all the coins she had to show,
But the peddler was superstitious,
And was glad to let it go.
Herifa sewed a scrap of voile,
Into a pouch to keep it in.
Then she looped it on a cord,
So that it hung against her skin.
Through the years she toiled,
Herifa never pledged her troth,
And all the time her treasure hung,
In its nest of fragile cloth.
Herifa walked across a field,
In a year of summer drought,
When the fragile cloth at last wore through,
And dropped her treasure out.
Frantically she searched down on,
The cracked and fissured ground,
But in the dry and dusty soil,
No sign of it she found.
She sat down in the dirt,
In that dry and blasted dearth,
Herifa, bitter and weary,
With her tears watered the earth.
Early the next morning,
Herifa went to search again.
In her hair the western wind,
That brings the blessed rain.
The thunder rolled, the heavens broke,
The rain fell like a flood.
In the field where her trinket fell,
A mighty warrior stood.
He spoke to her in a dragon tongue,
That took away her will,
And the dawning of another day,
Found them both there still.
The dragon spell began to fade,
As the day turned again to dusk.
She gazed upon her lover's face,
And saw an aged husk.
Some believed Herifa's tale,
And some thought she told lies,
But come next spring she bore a son,
Whose eyes were dragon wise.