A Letter To Santa

Poem By Janaki Nilmini

Dearest Santa, it's to you, I write
To enlighten you about our plight
Isn't the Christmas all about peace?
If so you must listen to our pleas

We are the turkeys, grown for Christmas
Genetically selected, fattened for meatiness
Often in pain due to hip degeneration
Cannot lift the feet in this situation
When in a natural habitat, we can fly
And, roost in trees to watch the night sky
But in the factory, overweight and over fed
We shuffle along and cry in a dimly-lit shed.

Lack of respect for nature's wisdom
Profits have compromised birds'freedom
Male birds are brutally manhandled
Beaks arepartially amputated
Mechanical devices violate the females
The eggsareproduced in large scales
The little ones never know the mother's touch
How can the man besocruelas such?

Collection happensas they are laid
And hatched in an incubator- man made
The chicksare kept in very large units
Thousands packed together for mega profits

Dearest Santa, I am not exaggerating
There is much cruelty in factory farming
Slaughter is another harrowing process
Some have long journeys, crammed into crates.

Now that you know our story of woe
Dearest Santa, may I please ask you
Point a way forward for the human world
Toward a society that cultivates and uphold
Values such as compassion and peace
Only then this cruelty can cease

At Christmas time when the world is at ease
And, the children sing with joy and peace
When you visit with gifts and greetings
Whisper to them about our grievings
Though it is late now for my generation
The children may bring ourliberation

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