Artwork by Ōtepoti/Dunedin Vegan and Animal Rights activist, Cassandra Ransom.
A poignant poem by Ōtepoti/Dunedin Vegan and Animal Rights activist, Jessica Keogh,
about a bobby calf: a 'waste product' of the dairy industry.
I thought she was my mother,
I'm sorry if I was wrong.
Will you keep me locked up in this cage for very long?
There's no room to stand up in here,
Though I'd love to learn to walk.
Am I being punished for how loudly I talk?
Because I'm sorry I cried so loudly,
Next time I'll stay silent.
I promise not to cry if it means you won't be violent.
I'm sorry I tried to steal your milk,
I thought it was for me.
Is that why I'm locked up in here so cramped and so lonely?
I promise if you let me out,
I won't complain or cry.
I can still hear mother calling me, won't you let me say goodbye?
Who's this now, walking toward my cage?
Perhaps, at last, a friend?
I hope he takes me to a place where my suffering will end.
But he's hitting me because I can't walk fast!
Because my legs are oh so weak.
I don't understand how you expect me to walk after lying down for weeks.
But, fair enough, it must be hard to deal with the likes of me.
I must be an abomination who's caused you huge suffering.
So I'm sorry, for all the wrong I've done.
I know my life is owed to you.
I'll repent for my horrid sins
And let you do what you must do.
Kill me, I deserve it.
Let your stomach be my grave.
This is how I shall show my thanks for the life you compassionately gave.
About the Author: Jessica Keogh is a 25yr old mother of two, and drama enthusiast. Born and raised in Dunedin, she believes the vegan movement has the power to someday outshine the outdated dairy farming culture we have here in Otago.