Bordeaux Bay

Bordeaux Bay
Watercolour by Tony Taylor http://www.paintingbreaksguernsey.com

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

DONKEY-WORK

A familiar sight when I was young, seaside donkeys were as much a part of summer holidays as candy floss, buckets, spades and ice cream cones.
Those forlorn beasts, usually under the supervision of a team of sullen youths, would plod back and forth all day with their cargo of excited children, while beyond their well-trodden path, we boys played bat and ball and built colossal sandcastles. 
Viewed from a modern, adult perspective, such donkey-work seems essentially cruel and unutterably sad. 


















DONKEYS

Tired seaside donkeys: watch them plod,
on khaki sand, from A to B
without enthusiasm, eyes
downcast, heads hung dejectedly,
like defrocked priests without a God,
tormented now by buzzing flies.

We can but pray for beasts like these,
required to labour in the sun
for some man’s profit whilst alive
then later by a knacker’s gun,
dispatched, or perished from disease,
that in safe pasture, they might thrive.


2 comments:

  1. As you say purely for profit, 'cause who could see pleasure in watching them suffer.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for your comment, Julian. The thought of them always makes me sad.

    ReplyDelete