All of God's creatures have rights, a fact that most people don't seem to recognize. This includes both human and non-human animals, but not all of them can speak for themselves. [See Amy-Le's Art]
The Old Donkey
By Amy-Le Owens
I remember a time of better places,
kind, gentle hands and warm, smiling faces;
The occasional treat of carrots and oats,
or even a brush of my thick winter coat.
Like clock-work each morning I'd stand at the gate
In rain, sleet or snow, no matter the state.
And wait for the moment when my day is made,
when love is shared and loneliness slain.
But then came a morn different to the rest,
I searched the horizon but there came no guest.
I tried not to let my hope eradicate,
"Don't worry" I soothed "they're likely just late."
But they never did arrive again after that day
And slowly but surely my hope went away.
My bones they grew weak from the cold frosty air,
The grass beneath me thinned and so did my fur.
My hooves became long, twisted and sore
To the extent that I found I could walk no more.
The rain hammered down and I feared the worst,
I could feel myself slipping away from the Earth.
And as I lay in despair so utterly fragile,
A sound crawled to my ears - one I hadn't heard for a long while.
I couldn't open my eyes, though I wanted to peek,
But I'm afraid my body had just become too weak.
A caring hand ran over my bones
and then they whispered to me "I'm bringing you home."
I awoke at a place I had never seen before,
The sun it shone bright, there was fresh grass galore.
I arose to see there was more of my kind,
chasing and charging and gleaming with pride.
At peace were they, and happy - long last!
A great distance they'd travelled from their awfully cruel past.
Lucky was I to have been found and saved,
From hunger, from sadness, and from an early grave.
I think back every so often at the place from which I came,
And for the ones that did leave me I hope they feel shame.
But what hurts me the most as I gaze across pastures green,
Is the amount of tortured souls that I have unfortunately seen.
They pass through here often, and it kills our human to say,
"I have not the money to feed you." and then they cry as they're taken away.
They look longingly into the distance, wishing that they could do more,
So I go over to rest on their shoulder, and into my heart their love pours.
I wish I could tell them thank you, and that they've done more than anyone could ask,
And that to pay for all our needs, is not - alone - their task.
If only people would give a little to help this place to thrive,
To give us food and warmth and shelter, and to keep a donkey alive.