Lynne GoldsmithElegy for the Horses
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.

Elegy for the Horses
By Lynne Goldsmith

Bidders come—
saleyards flood—
horse whip flogs—
reminiscent of—
Blacks sold off—
branded, tarred—
jammed in pens—
poked and prodded—
auctioned off—
18th-19th century—
not so long ago—

Rebel Prince, Perfectly Spun,
Startreusse, Courtney’s Luv,

National Flag, Touchdown Miss,
Explore the World, Halo’s Image,
Millster, Cloverdale, Unbuckled—

names of the pedigreed (just some)
unharnessed unto blood.

Knackeries win
purebred, standardbred, quarterbred, Arabian,
thoroughbred, feral doesn’t matter when
doesn’t matter how taken to consumption
or cut up filled with swarming maggots
cracked as bones in vats of refuse.

“Please pass the butter,” she says
at dining table of lace and linen cloth
in her birdcage veil hat with feather
sticking up like her in her tie-neck dress
of blue and yellow floral patterns.

The man across from her, seated
corpulent, handlebar mustache,
in sharkskin suit with leather buckle shoes
sets down his sterling silverware—too hard
upon Bone china delicate from cattle ash
and eyes his quail and crusty bread,
swirls the red Bordeaux within its glass
and forgets about—never built a bond

with horses he just sold,
ones who brought no profits.

“At the track—we’ll go again,”
he says, “I know I’ll win—win most big,”
and pats the beads of sweat upon his brow.

The woman nods her head, dabs her lips
with napkin lifted from her lap.

Man squints at watch fob from his vest.
Tucks the piece back upon his breast.

©Lynne Goldsmith, 2020

Photo by akın akdağ from Pexels

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