A Publication of
Catholic Concern for Animals
Selections From The Ark Number 203 - Summer 2006
The Cry of the Victims
(Based on Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s ‘Cry of the Children’)
Do you hear the victims pleading, O my brothers,
Ere the sacrifice is done?
They are waiting for the hour of liberation,
The feel of earth and sun –
The world of nature leaps in jubilation,
The seagulls glide and swoop on open wings,
The free air is filled with songs and clamour
Of little darting things;
But the vivisection victims, O my brothers,
They are crying for release;
They are looking to the hand that feeds the others,
The hand that brings no peace.
Do you heed the silent protest, cruel nation,
Of the victims coldly penned?
Do you justify such callous exploitation
By the justice of the end?
‘Our pain rises upward, O our tyrants,
Above your practised skill;
And he who notes the fall of every sparrow
Requires of you our rightful purpose still.
Not for destruction’s ruthless laceration
He gave our innocence;
And our cry pierces deeper, in frustration,
Than all your vain pretence.’
(First published in The Ark No 80, December 1963)
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