with my eyes
By Brenda Shoss, KinshipCircle

My prayer tonight is for all who lie down in chains or cages.

Alone and afraid on concrete floors.
Soundless screams behind metal.
Locked in rooms, forever.

I feel their fear arise in my soul. Ancient yet new...
A primal flame burning against the walls of my heart.

I want to scream an endless note, loud and true:

Clubbed. Forgotten.
Dismembered. Forgotten.
Gassed. Forgotten.
Beaten. Forgotten.
Burned. Forgotten.
Electrocuted. Forgotten.
Abandoned. Forgotten.
Poisoned. Forgotten.
Skinned. Forgotten.
Shot. Forgotten.
Caged. Forgotten.
Shackled. Forgotten.
Murdered. Forgotten.

With my eyes, they will be seen.
With my voice, they will be heard.
With my hands, they will know comfort.
With my action, they will be free.

Dear God, fill their oppressors with mercy and empathy.
Dear God, instill compassion where there is apathy.
Replace horror with grace. Bloodshed with healing.

Restore humans and animals to their natural place.
Liberate humans and animals from
greed, violence and hate.

So that tonight and evermore, ALL may lie down to sleep
unchained — uncaged — free