Today's poem is by Jasmine Lamb

Looking On

The farm was quiet at midday, shadows
Were short and chores were done. A cow, beside
The barn, stood patiently. The butcher chose
A knife and after sharpening it, tried
His thumb along the edge. I stayed to watch
The cow be slaughtered. What was dying like
I wondered, new to farming and a touch
Naïve to life. The butcher stroked her back
And cut her throat. She stood a moment — still,
Unsure which way to fall or what had happened
And then collapsed. I thought I took it well
Not knowing what I took at all and pardoned
Myself for having thought that I could learn
Of death or anything while looking on.

Copyright © 2004 Jasmine Lamb All rights reserved
from The Formalist
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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