With wooden swords we fought dragons of air,
routing evil on that long Summer’s day,
yet we swung our swords with little care
and made a war of our innocent play.
The dragons laughed, shaking the trees
to see us quarreling over chance blows,
and they flew away with the whirling breeze
as our voices—and our tempers—rose.
We struck to hurt, we struck for blood,
we struck to inflict what we could of pain
and knocked each other down in the mud
while the sky above us began to rain.
The chipmunks chattered, the leaves scattered,
and we struck our swords wildly together
and soon nothing else really mattered
as we fought in that thunderous weather.
And so we fought until our fathers came
and pulled us away from one another,
whipping us for making war a game
and not using real swords to kill each other.