Bill Carmel – Dragon’s Breath


Artist Initiator: Bill Carmel
Title: Desdemona Midnight’s Dream
Medium: Acrylic on Paper
Price: $1500

Author Responder: Marlene Dotterer
Title: The Dragons of Jupiter at Play
Price: $5

Flaming cymbals crashed and chased each other, pulled by the gas giant’s intense gravity into a whirling turmoil of colorful heat. The Singer floated above her living canvas, her great, broad wings stretched to catch the drifts, while six pairs of secondary wings beat their tireless rhythm against gravity. When the brilliant red of the ancient storm reached its nadir and paled to a weary pinkish orange, she dove, exhaling fire and music into the winds. The flames circled above her, driving the music into an upward crescendo. The atmosphere shook with the shock of the sound and the chorus surrounding the Singer burst into an ecstatic descant to drive the flames higher.

Her bearing strong and proud, the Singer focused on the path she had built into the heart of the storm. She drew breath and held her wings still, intent on the heat growing inside her. 

One beat…Two… Now!

Her flames roared out and she raced along the path, swerving from side to side, always downward, over and back, her flames lighting the way, the music pounding into the storm. The chorus followed in practiced choreography, adding their flames to hers in a protective barrier, just as their bodies provided a physical barrier to hers. 

The storm pulsed, its angry red returning as power beat against it. In joyous exaltation, the Singer folded her wings against her back and plunged into the storm, alone and brazen. 

Music screamed, winds tore at her from all directions, and an inferno of flames engulfed her. A smile split the Singer’s snout and with one more breath, she stood upright on the winds, her tail lashing away the flames. 

She exhaled.

The new breath of flames and music vibrated with power, bringing the cacophony into one clear note that rose high. The winds of the ancient storm… paused.

The Singer rose in triumph, allowing the storm to resume its path as she burst into the midst of her chorus. They all held the note, letting the planetary winds carry their song for others to hear.

They ended the note on a gentle breeze. In the silence, the youngest exhaled a tiny flame of giggles. The Singer laughed and the laughter spread. They swirled around each other, thrilled with their accomplishment. Then one by one, and by twos and threes, they flew off to other pursuits.


Copyright © 2024 by Marlene Dotterer