Heidi StephensonA shit cup of coffee brewing the next pandemic
Animal Rights Poetry By Heidi Stephenson From All-Creatures.org

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

A shit cup of coffee brewing the next pandemic
(after Heathcote Williams)
By Heidi Stephenson

The civet cat
is a gentle fruit-eater,
a shy, nocturnal mammal,
from the family

Native to the tropical
rainforests, woodlands,
savannah and mountains
of Southern Africa,
China and South East Asia,
when food is scarce in nature,
as an act of desperation,
these vegan animals
will eat the fruit
of coffee plants.
The tough beans
(of little nutritional value)
are left undigested.
And herein lies
the problem.

Humans addicted
to morning/afternoon,
weekend/hourly fixes,
obsessed with trying out
the new, the ‘exotic’
have discovered
that the civet’s
stomach enzymes
cut the bitterness
from the flavour
in their coffee cup -
even adding
some “robust” extras.

Coffee beans
from force-fed civet cats
(made to eat
ungoldly amounts
with laxatives
to maximise
the collection
of “processed” beans,)
are now desired
as the finest “gourmet,”
fetching astronomical global prices,
10 to 50 times higher,
than their counterparts.

In conscience-less cafés
in Indonesia, Bali, China,
the Philippines, New York and London,
single cups of “civet coffee,”
kopi luwak,” “caphe cut chon,”
“cat poop coffee” are sold
for upwards of $30, £50...
costing the lives,
freedom and well-being
of many poor civet cats.

Highly endangered,
rapidly disappearing,
mercilessly hunted,
(trapped at 6 months old,
confined to tiny,
rusting, wire-floor cages,)
horrifically abused
and exploited, in new,
make-shift “factory farms,”
they are sold on to live
animal markets,
when their digestive systems
finally fail.

Skinned alive,
eaten to boot,
(in Southern China,
roasted whole,
sometimes still living,
with garlic, soy and ginger…)
these nonviolent beings
are turned into “Tiger
Dragon” and “Phoenix” ‘soups,’
(their perineal glands first scraped
to provide the buttery,
caramel taste in sweets,
and to “stabilize”
expensive perfumes.)

When SARS first appeared
in humans, in China, in 2003
Severe Acute Respiratory System,”
many knew (and researchers discovered)
that the origin was to be found
in the tortured, savoured civet cats.

Their hellish existences,
at Man’s cruel hands,
(immune systems attacked
beyond self-repair,)
are now thought to have made them
“intermediate hosts”
between bats and humans
for COVID-19 too.

More Karma for the comatose.

Civet Cat
Image from PETA

©Heidi Stephenson, September 2020

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