Sunday, November 8, 2009


exile dp 316

there was a time when we were not exiles
a time when paradise was not some imagined garden
walled from our world
paradise was here and now

in that time and in that place
we long-horned four-footed ones
were honoured and rejected
just as often or rarely as anyone

our horns our feet our udders
were nothing special
but they were us

one day someone said
you lot – we looked around to see if we were that lot
yes said this person
you long-horned four-footed uddered ones
it is time for you to go
take with you your golden calves
for you are no longer welcome here

that was the day we were cast out exiled
from the place some now call paradise
the walls were high covered by thorns

soon after it got worse
not only were we no longer welcome
in spite of our usefulness
we were also spat upon
great gobs of spit spewed our way
landing if we were lucky at our feet
and if we were not the goo was in our hair and on our skin

then they sent the children out
from the garden behind the wall
to throw stones at us
you could see them looking with shining eyes
for the biggest missile
stones and rocks flung by young fingers

we tried to ignore it
walking on in silence
we lowed together
we tried to stop it
but one day one of us
in a fever of anger
lashed out gored him
the son of the most
important man
in the village

after that it was all out war
if we ventured through their village
took a short cut across their fields
if they saw our outline on the ridge
they came for us some of us were killed

some of us were captured
they tied us to the millstone
to the water wheel
and had us walking an eternity of circles
they yoked us to the cart
they whipped us
they took us to their battle fields
we hauled we carried we bled
we were abandoned when they fled

and then some of us escaped
we travelled in groups
some towards the rising sun
some towards the setting sun

you will find us in these places
at the edges of every known world
like it or not we are everywhere


  1. Powerful, impactful. The image at the millstone is hard, sad, wonderful.

    Thank you. Peace,