In Costa Rica In blazing driftwood the green keeps showing at the same place; as, intermittently, the fire-opal shows blue and green. In Costa Rica the true Chinese lizard face is found, of the amphibious falling dragon, the living fire-work. He leaps and meets his likeness in the stream and, king with king, helped by his three-part plume along the back, runs on two legs, tail dragging: faints upon the air; then with a spring dives to the stream-bed, hiding as the chieftain with gold body hid in Guatavita Lake. He runs, he flies, he swims, to get to his basilica— “the ruler of Rivers, Lakes, and Seas, invisible or visible,” with clouds to do as bid—and can be “long or short, and also coarse or fine at pleasure.” The Malay Dragon We have ours; and they have theirs. Ours has a skin feather crest; theirs has wings out from the waist which is snuff-brown or sallow. Ours falls from trees on water; theirs is the smallest dragon that knows how to dive head-first from a tree-top to something dry. Floating on spread ribs, the boat-like body settles on the clamshell-tinted spray sprung from the nutmeg tree—minute legs trailing half akimbo—the true divinity of Malay. Among unfragrant orchids, on the unnutritious nut- tree. Myristica fragans, harless god spreads ribs that do not raise a hood. This is the serpent-dove peculiar to the East; that lives as the butterfly or bat can, in a brood, conferring wings on what it grasps, as the air-plant does. The Tuatera Elsewhere, sea lizards— congregated so there is not room to step, with tails laid criss-cross, alligator-style, among birds toddling in and out—are innocent of whom thy neighbor. Bird-reptile social life is pleasing. The tuatera will tolerate a petrel in its den, and lay ten eggs or nine—the number laid by dragons since” a true dragon has nine songs.” The frilled lizard, the kind with no legs, and the three-horned chameleon are non-serious ones that take to flight if you do not. In Copenhagen the principal door of the bourse is roofed by two pairs of dragons standing on their heads—twirled by the architect—so that the four green tails conspiring upright symbolize four-fold security. In Costa Rica Now, where apotans drop their nuts out on the stream, there is, as I have said, one of the quickest lizards in the world—the basilisk—that feeds on leaves and berries and has shade from palm-vines, ferns, and peperomias; or lies basking on a horizontal branch from which sour-grass a nd orchids sprout. If beset, he lets go, smites the water, and runs on it—a thing difficult for fingered feet. But when captured—stiff and somewhat heavy, like fresh putty on the hand—he is no longer the slight lizard that can stand in a receding flattened S—small, long and vertically serpentine or sagging, span the bushes in a fox’s bridge. Vines suspended the weight of his faint shadow fixed on silk. As by a Chinese brush, eight green bands are painted on the tail—as piano keys are barred by five black stripes across the white. This octave of faulty decorum hides the extraordinary lizard till night-fall, which is for man the basilisk whose look will kill; but is for lizard men can kill, the welcome dark—with galloped ground-base of the military drum, the squeak of bag-pipes and of bats. Hollow whistled monkey-notes disrupt the castanets. Taps from the back of the bow sound odd on last year’s gourd, or when they touch the kettledrums—at which (for there’s no light), a scared frog, screaming like a bird, leaps out from weeds in which it could have hid, with curves of the meteorite, wide water-bug strokes, in jerks which express a regal and excellent awkwardness, the basilisk portrays mythology’s wish to be interchangeably man and fish-- traveling rapidly upward, as spider-clawed fingers can twang the bass strings of the harp, and with steps as articulate, make their way back to retirement on strings that vibrate till the claws are spread flat. Among tightened wires, minute noises swell and change, as in the woods’ acoustic shell they will with trees as avenues of steel to veil as from black opal emerald opal emerald— scale which Swinburne called in prose, the noiseless music that hangs about the serpent when it stirs or springs. No anonymous nightingale sings in a swamp, fed on sound from porcupine-quilled palm-trees that rattle like the rain. This is our Tower-of-London jewel that the Spaniards failed to see, among the feather capes and hawk’s-head moths and black-chinned humming-birds; the innocent, rare, gold- defending dragon that as you look begins to be a nervous naked sword on little feet, with three-fold separate flame above the hilt, inhabiting fire eating into the air. Thus nested in the phosphorescent alligator that copies each digression of the shape, he pants and settles—head up and eyes black as the molested bird’s, with look of whetted fierceness, in what is merely breathing and recoiling from the hand. Thinking himself hid among the yet unfounded jade ax-heads, silver jaguars and bats, and amethysts and polished iron, gold in a ten-ton chain, and pearls the size of pigeon-eggs, he is alive there in his basilisk cocoon beneath the one living green; his quicksilver ferocity quenched in the rustle of his fall into the sheath which is the shattering sudden splash that marks his temporary loss.