“Knight, With Umbrella”

The difficulty with all
Forms of heroism
Is that they require
Appropriate occasions,
And that these are rarer
Even than heroes.
Counsequently, the hero
Waits and waits,
Exquisitely aware
Of the absence of any
Heroic way
To mail a letter,
Buy theatre tickets,
Or put on rubbers.

Most remarkable about
The older heroes
Is their luck in encountering
Punctual dragons,
Compliantly belligerent,
And maidens regularly
Requiring rescue.
I observe all this
A little bitterly,
In rented armor
On an icy corner,
Late for the costume
Party, and reflecting
How long one waits,
These days,
Even for a cab.

— Elder Olson