Song for a Gecko

Oh once I spotted old Gremio
Climb ‘board ship off to sea,
The goodship Petasatus
His dest’ny for to seek.

He set sail in the morning
Salt sea spraying on his scales
‘Cross straits most dire he went at day
By night drifted in company of whales.

Oh Gremio, the geckoest gecko
A man’s man of a lizard
Set out to find the Mighty Rope
Trying not to lose his gizzard.

By the time the new day dawnéd
Distant peaks were seen to loom
Revealing the island whose perils he sought:
A monument… of doom.

For the rope of doom and destiny
In its ancient slumber lay
Within a hidden cave it waited
Full of wrath saved for that day

When Gremio disturbed its spiteful peace.
The gecko jumped to shore, with fiery eyes,
His crew cow’d back in fear.
“Ev’ry fool who treads there dies,”
The cowards moaned.
So Gremio sought the rope alone.

All the while we rested
All safe within our home
With nary a thought
Of the tale in this poem.

Then to our minds came a vision
Of Gremio’s distress
And of the monster full of madness
That guarded the rope in its nest.

So we sprang up to action
Kent and Britten and I,
Dave and Brad and McKay (son of Kay)
To our ship we did fly.

O’er the lost and sundered seas
Far away to the North
Without slowing or turning
Or putting in to port

We cut towards our friend
In a trap across the waves
And we set our anchor in the harbor’s depths
Arriving at night of the third day.

No sign remained of the cowardly crew
Just gecko tracks in the sand.
So we six with a cry of “Fragor!” set out
To intervene in a lizard’s last stand.

When we got to the cave
‘Twas a glowin’ full of fire
And Gremio within the flame was bound
In the rope—oh, it was dreadfully dire!

Our gecko friend looked sure asleep
Though little rest (I’m sure) did he receive.
Kent’s lighting sight, though, spotted two eyes
Peer from back of the cave, and the fires did seeth.

It was Gnya, a demon of fire
Whose lust for the rope almost matched his great power.
Dave stood forth, and in noble voice declared
“€œWe demand you release our friend this hour!”

To our ultimatum came reply of a billow of smoke.
The earth quaked and crackling like a flame
Rumbled the voice of the demon, saying
“You, weaklings, sealed your fate when you came

And ’round campfires at home, when there’s talk amongst folk
Your story—if ever it deserves to be told—
Will end right here, in fire and blood and heat
And the years will long echo the fate of your bodies lying cold.”

So mighty the strength of this speech
That e’en Brad the mighty trembled and shook.
I was about to despair and run back to the beach
When Gremio woke, with a mischievous look.

The fiend wasn’t unconscious, nor even asleep
But lay waiting for backup! “We must stay and fight,”
I counseled my brothers. “Have faith, we can win.”
Renewed, our conviction shone on us like a light.

And McKay, son of Kay, struck the first of all blows
His strange discus he drove to the fire demon’s bowels
The gecko slashed at Gnya’s eyes, Kent sprinted inside,
The rest of us charged with most battlesome howls.

The fight did rage hotly and sore.
Dave’s shepherd’s crook slashed, the fateful day wore on.
Gnya raged with a fire hotter than devil’s flame.
Stars spun overhead, then slowly arrived the dawn.

He was the geckoest gecko
A man’s man of a lizard,
Gremio, who emerged from the cave
With something greater still than his gizzard.

From the ruins of Gnya’s
Now-deserted cave
He scooped up the rope
That he’d gone there to save.

But then the earth shook one more time
The cave crumbled and fell over gecko and rope.
Gremio scrambled out of the rock
But the rope was not there.

We sailed home, with Gremio’s hand at the helm,
The sun sinking behind us along with our hopes.
The rope on another day again our quest would be:
That doomful and destinous rope of all ropes.


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