Where there is injury let me sow pardon.
…St Francis of Assisi
Dragons, as most of us know, are no strangers to irony and synchronicity. Through the centuries, their relationship to the Catholic Church has been sanguinary to say the least – and we will surely speak of the Dark Times at a later date.
But today is one of those rare days when the joy of Dragons and the better angels of faith coincide. And Dragons heartily approve.
For October 4th is not only Kiss a Dragon Day, it’s also the Feast of St Francis.
By the 13th century, Dragons – espcially those in Europe – had already been dealt innumerable blows by those wielding swords in the name of religion. They’d crossed paths with zealous converts before, men and women full of passionate intensity, and 99 time out of 100, those encounters ended badly. So it was with caution that they followed the life of this man of Assisi, from callow young soldier to mystic man of peace.
And it was with delight that they found in him a kindred spirit. Here was that rare individual who saw beyond the petty limitations of species or tribe, who looked upon all creatures as equally divine. Even Dragons. (This, of course, is something every Dragon knows in their very core.)
If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures
from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will
deal likewise with their fellow men. …St Francis
And word has it from the Dragons of yore that Francis sought to make amends for the many wrongs done to our scaly friends. He welcomed their presence and treasured them as fellow travelers on this fragile Earth.
So, today, in memory of a good man who loved Dragons well, we stop and kiss a Dragon.
 A brief caveat to you rookie dracophiles out there: For safety’s sake you make that “Kiss Your Dragon” or at least, “Kiss A Dragon You Know.” Most Dragons are not averse to affection, but, as with any wild creature, you don’t want to force yourself on them uninvited. Also, keep plenty of lip balm on hand, just in case.