Lynne GoldsmithDairy Milk: Drink of Animal Servitude
Animal Rights Poetry By Lynne Goldsmith From

Poems of compassion dedicated to the non-human animals who share this planet with us and the people who fight for them.

Dairy Milk: Drink of Animal Servitude
By Lynne Goldsmith

As we drink our glass of milk
straight from store shelf, fresh
this very morning
unloaded from trucks
before cocks crow, cartons
kept cool in our homes,
pasteurized, homogenized
to the smooth of palatable
help us remember
that on that commercial
dairy farm on the outskirts
of town, acres of hiddenness
of lame and of limps
cows to bleed
wallow kicked
bodies in excrement, urine,
tie-stalls too tight to turn in
zero grazing allowed
yearly insemination,
growth hormone
to raise production—
to emaciation,
calcium depletion,
laminitis (corium injury),
digital dermatitis,
bacterial infection,
pus of mastitis,
ulcers of soles,
workers burning udders,
burning horns
or sawing off
with use of wires
hot irons
snapping skin
back the losses, tagged/branded
mothers’ years of reductions
bearing damages
(shackles, nerves, concrete
shatters) pressures to strike
at the silencing
newborns torn
to isolated months of motherless
darkness (dragged through dirt)
unwanted, and, if male,
killed within hours
or crated months
to preserve cramped tender
the meat, white skin preferred,
while sisters, newly born,
await guns, the unknowns,
alone in tight hutches
impregnations to come
as in replacements to mothers,
mothers now gone to fatigue,
fallen to forgotten
as we drink to the ones—
those from our farm to our market
to our tables to the carpets
of our Earth birthing something of love,
something of the wanted that turned
its face to disappearing on that farm
on the outskirts, the town,
the countries,
the peoples,
what we know—
what we know
of all that's hidden.

©Lynne Goldsmith, 2020

frightened Cow
Image by Wolfgang Ehrecke from Pixabay

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