I want my money back I came to see an Elephant I paid to see a conservation ambassador Inspire me to help conserve the species Especially her kind
I saw an empty shell
She looks like an Elephant But what is there to see, not Happy She is a poor teacher of Elephant lessons She is no solitary animal, but kept confined Like all captives, neurones scrambled, brain denied Stereotypy is not a dance – no, a pathetic trance A sign she can’t be happy in mind She’s not right in the head.
She is an empty shell
They have broken personalities All the Elephants with names, captive They are poor Elephant facsimiles They have the stature, the thick skin and bones They are devoid of Elephant spirit, truncated They are subjected to Floydian ‘Brain Damage’ They are all caught on the dark side (“‘As a matter of fact, it’s all dark’*) Cut off from the herd
They are empty shells
We pay the price to see: see the price they pay We fall for the old ‘conservation /education’ story We fail to see the oppression and the damage done We should be able to see for ourselves We could accept they are Sentients like us We could see them better in a sanctuary We could do the right thing Will we?
Collect all the empty shells
Put them back where they can refill Regain their freedom and society Be Elephants again, herd mentality That would be something to see Is it just a Zoological fantasy?
I find myself unhappy for Happy, again
If I find myself outside her enclosure (But I wouldn’t pay to go in anyway) Watching her sway song, groundhog days One day closer to her end of days Inspired to write yet another Happy poem Adding to ‘Not Happy’ ‘Personable’ ‘Elephant Stomp’ After the first setback of her legal person court case What would I do if I were you?
Might just as well go to a museum Pay to see a stuffed Elephant This one already is
I want my money back I came to see an Elephant Largest land animal, majestic Social fellow-sentient being Exemplary, salutary
I got an empty shell
*From ‘Brain Damage’ on the Pink Floyd album ‘Dark Side of the Moon’
**From ‘The Needle and the Damage Done’ by Neil Young
For all captive Elephants – Happy, Lucy, Shankar, The Fresno Elephants and so many more.
Written By Anthony Lovell.
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