Listen on YouTube
Most folk avoid the Pelagir Hills, where ancient wars and battles
Were fought with magic, not with steel, for land and gold and chattels
Most folk avoid the forest dark for magic's still surround it
And change the creatures living there and all that dwell around it
Within a tree upon a hill that glowed at night with magic
His heart was brave, his mind was wise. He longed to be a wizard
But who would ever think to teach their magic to a lizard?
So poor Gervase would sit and dream, sight as sadly ruing
That fate kept him forever barred from good he could be doing
That he had wit and mind and will it cannot be debated
He also had the kindest heart that ever gods created
One day as Gervase sight and dreamed all in the forest sunning
He heard a noise of horse and hound and sounds of two feet running
A human stumbled into his glade, a human worn and weary
Dressed in a shredded wizard’s robe, his eyes past hope and dreary
The magic of his birthplace gave Gervase the gift of speaking
He hesitated not at all – ran to the wizard squeaking,
“Hid human, hide! Hide in my tree!” he danced and pointed madly
The wizard stared, the wizard gasped, then hid himself right gladly
Gervase at once lay in the sun until the hunt came by him
And glowered in the hollow tree and hissed when they came near him
And bit the dogs’ noses so they’d yelp and leap and fear him
Thrice damn that wizard!” snarl his foe. “He’s slipped our hunters neatly
The hounds have surely been misled. They’ve lost the trail completely.”
He whipped the dogs off of the tree and sent them homeward running
And never once suspected it was all Gervase’s cunning
The wizard out of hiding crept. “Thrice blessing I accord you!
And is there somehow any way I can at all reward you?”
“I want to be a man like you!” Gervase replied unthinking
“A wizard - or a man?” replied the mage who stared, unblinking.
“For I can only grant one, the form of man or power
What will you choose? Choose wisely, I must leave within the hour.”
Gervase in silence sat and thought, his mind in turmoil churning
And first the one choice thinking on, then on the other turning
Yes, he could have the power he craved, the magic of a wizard
But who believed that power lived inside a lizard?
Or he could have the form of man, but what could he do in it?
And all the good he craved to do – how then could he begin it?
Within the councils of the Wise there sits a welcome stranger
His word is sought by high and low if there is need or danger
He gives his aid to all who ask, who need one to defend them
And though his form is very strange compared to those beside him
The mages care not for the form, but for the mind inside him
For though he’s small, and brightly scaled, they do not see a lizard
He’s called by all, both great and small, “Gervase, the Noble Wizard.”
He’s known by all, both great and small, Gervase the Lizard Wizard!