A Sad Tradition
by Lance Landall

A Sad Tradition

Wow! That was really awesome, Dad, and what an amazing prize,
It was quietly grazing — then BANG! — you caught it by surprise.
I saw it stumble, try to get back up, and then it fell,
But you got it real good, Dad — what a rush, watching you kill.

Could I have a go please, Dad? I’d love to get as good as you,
And surely if I practice, I’ll become a great shot too.
I’ll sneak up on some creature, innocently standing there,
And BANG! — down it will go, twisting, twitching, legs in the air.

I promise I’ll take care, Dad, so please can I try your gun?
I want to be a hunter too, and together we’ll have fun.
I’ll follow in your footsteps, and one day, teach my kids to kill,
And then they’ll teach their kids too, who’ll soon pick up on that skill.

I’d never kill a human though, as taking life’s not right,
I’d only have a creature in my telescopic sight.
And I would teach my children that the only blood to spill,
Is a creature’s — whose execution — gives hunters a thrill.

After all, they’re just creatures, ay Dad? And therefore, fair game,
Though I wouldn’t hurt my pet, as a pet’s just not the same.
I know it’s still a creature, but it’s different, ay Dad?
And if anyone were to hurt it — boy, would I feel bad.

Anyway, I think we’re there, Dad — I’m sure it’s here somewhere,
Yes, see the splashes of blood on those bushes over there?
There it is. It’s a beauty. I wish I could have killed it,
Although I’d pass when it comes to skinning — I must admit.

What if I hold your gun, Dad, so you can carry the deer?
I’ll be really careful — wow, it’s a cool one, all that gear.
When I get my own gun, Dad, I will treat it special too,
And that same love for killing enjoy, foster and pursue.

BANG!

Dad, Dad ...?