In my basil bed
there grows a basilisk,
who, when angry, turns red,
and blasts the ants to pebbles.

He keeps the snakes at bay
and turns mice to stone.
He hides throughout the day,
but leaves small lawn ornaments in return.

One night, I stayed up late,
the scent of basil hanging.
Under the moon his plates
of armor reflected the glow.

I was careful not to look
too closely at his beady eyes.
I'd read too many a book
to take too many a risk.

He cold-blasted some worms
and loudly munched away.
I didn't realize he didn't burn
the animals to stone.

The next morning I found
half-eaten stone slugs
half-strewn in and around
the fragrant stands of basil.

My basil garden grows a basilisk.
I think I shall keep him, despite the risk.