The Prize – a Cautionary Tale
by Doreen Hopwood
It caught her eye
whilst passing by,
glowing and glimmering
in the shimmering sun.
With thoughts of riches
and granted wishes,
the Goddess of greed
planted Her seed.
She lay along the mossy bank,
dipped her hand and deeply drank,
gazing at the wondrous jewel
nestling in the deep, dark pool.
Discarding shoes, she waded in,
legs brushing weeds and fishy fins,
she slipped and slid on slippery stones,
reaching down to depths unknown.
So intent was she,
she did not see
the sly and wanton faces
treacherously hid in secret places.
Her questing hand, prize secured,
found too late it had been lured
by evil means to a watery snare,
planned and laid with deadly care.
Down and down they pulled their net,
'til the swirling darkness, cold and wet,
swiftly changed from shade to light,
a whirlpool of colour, bubbling bright.
They dragged her by her billowing hair,
faster and faster, she knew not where,
until at last there loomed in view
aqueous turrets of many hues.
As coral gates opened wide,
they rushed their victim deep inside,
where seated on a golden chair
The Queen of the Sidhe ruled her lair.
Weaving spells on her magic loom,
sealing fates and planning doom,
she raised her lovely faery head
and in ringing tones sternly said...
'Another human wretch I spy,
another fool prepared to die!
How often must the tale be told?
All that glitters is not gold!'