A mournful sound ,
dreadful and beautiful,
fit to bring tears to any eye,
evoking the black pit of Hell..

Oh woe! Oh woe! Oh cruel
doleful, awful harmony!

A concord of discord
that fills the courtyard.

A dirge by creatures
rent from their owners,
anxious and alone,
tied to the bars
of some timeless limbo.

Bassets, and Red Setters
in a clear brown baritone;
Bloodhounds just below
intone a bleary profundo;
and Labradors and Boxers
mellifluous with tenor.

Terriers and Yorkies barking mad
in a fine soprano passion
vie to hit the topmost C.
with coloratura Poodles clad
in highest fashion.

These are soft creatures, left
outside Safeways every day,
every breed and pedigree
some of them no breed at all
tethered just like animals.

So they sing in agony,
left in mutual misery,
feeling they must be bad,
to be thus bereft and torn
from their adored
mum or dad.

Saturday, 30 June 2001