My photo of this bovine handmaiden

Ode to a Bovine Handmaiden

A young Red Angus heifer with a top knot on her head,

Honey brown eyes, long eyelashes, ears velvety handles,

Her tongue licking her nose, chewing stomach cud;

Short, stocky legs on ungulate hoofs with two toes,

Domesticated, herbivore with a four chambered

Stomach to digest green grass into white milk;

Bellowing, just eight months old, separated to a new farm

Until springtime to be taken as a handmaiden

To meet an Angus bull, crunching her back

With a quick penile thrust to impregnate a new calf

To freshen in nine months; licking him dry, nuzzling her teat,

Never forgetting the scent; unable to mother with soft cries;

If a boy calf … to be taken away to fatten and kill for veal,

If a girl calf … to be raised and sold as another handmaiden.

Annemarie Berukoff

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