By Tammy C. Smith
An Animal Rights Poem from


By Tammy C. Smith

She can hardly breathe. The air is so thick.
It’s dark, she can’t see. She knows she is sick.
How much her feet hurt. It’s so hard to stand.
She’s covered in dirt. Her neck wears a brand.

She saw light one time. Moving between crates.
The temperature climbs. Her body now shakes.
Her wing is broken. It hangs by her side.
Her legs are too thin. Her body is wide.

She stands in her waste. She can’t lift her head.
No sound does she make. By tube she is fed.
She’s never felt sun. Or breathed in fresh air.
Six weeks hard time done. Her crime was: birth there.

Her feathers are thin. Her flesh raw and sore.
Beneath her fallen. They lay on the floor.
Screaming, and the burn. She remembers now.
She did try to turn. A hand held her down.

Unconscious two days. After the hot knife.
Her badly burned face. Just clinging to life.
She is just waking. The air is so dense.
Her body aching. Her face feels different.

Her mouth is crusty. With burns and blisters.
She is so thirsty. No water is hers.
Her beak is gone now. Her feathers blood soaked.
The pain pulls her down. On her blood she chokes.

It’s too dark to see. Sounds from the others.
They’re crying, softly. She hears them suffer.
Her pain is so great. She’s weak, trembling.
Alone in her crate. Silent, listening.

Her face feathers charred. The loss of her beak.
Standing is too hard. She’s growing more weak.
She just wants water. Her throat is burning.
There is none for her. None will be coming.

She has to lie down. She’s shaking too much.
No water was found. Her blisters now bust. |
Her breaths are shallow. She’s down on her side.
She puts her head low. Her body abides.

She lays in the dark. On bloody feathers.
Hearing them is hard. Cries from the others.
She knows she will die. She struggles no more.
She is still and quiet. As death she waits for.

She wishes for sleep. With pain in her eyes.
An exit she seeks. It finally arrives.
Her death is silent. No sound does she make.
For just one moment. Her body does shake.

She opened her eyes. She looks so frightened.
She quietly dies. Her pain finally ends.
How small she looks there. So limp and so frail.
Her open eyes stare. From six weeks of hell.

She lies motionless. Alone in her crate.
No one takes notice. For over three days.
She lived for her death. No other reason.
And for her last breath. Grace did never come.

Will you think of her? This life that was she.
Will you remember? Her name was Mary.

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