When I was a tot I put a penny on my tongue
and tasted what they ate in a cave.
The bones of dragons,
licked clean of sinew,
flavored by the iron arrow that made him slain,
a soup stirred by a crone
whose ragged sleeve dipped into the steaming gruel.
My grandfather was a giant,
chief assassin when kin gathered,
who always placed a nickel on my forehead,
pressed it to cling with drunken spittle.
My mother brushed the coin away
to keep my price pure and high.
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