In a whispering kiss
the cow will say,
'I know why you wear me -
even if you don't.
But I don't understand your
ignorance: do you not realise
your coat was once mine?
Do my hooves not behoove
an answer? The pain of leather
is not in the stripping back of flesh,
or the cutting of throats, or even
the breaking of tails and bone;
the pain of leather is that
we must forgive you: despite
all your claims, you really don't know
do you? You really don't.
We can't throw the good out
with the bad - not like you throw out
meat by its sell by date. Next summer
will be an Indian summer, I hear.
You'd best not wear your jackets, then:
hang up your leather in your wardrobe.
Fold away your woollen jumper.
But buy your lover a silken gown.
The spiders dance for you inside the lamb.
Break our backs and bleed us out.
Take our skin: here, we don't need it.
Sell it on for pounds. Endless pounds of meat.'