For the students at the Missouri School for the Deaf
Above the library flies a golden dragon,
above tables, chairs, computers, books,
our heads at this gathering. It is
a Chinese dragon of golden scales
crafted of corrugated cardboard
and of blazing red wings
like flames across the cosmos,
a comet across the dark horizon.
The young poets come forward
with their poems. Their hands
fly with the dragon as they sign
their passions and their dreams.
A girl becomes a mermaid—
fingers, then hands, then arms
swimming through the ocean of her poem.
She dives deep, then rises toward the sun,
catching its glittery gift above
with the golden dragon.