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Farmyard Fable (short story)

Posted on April 2, 2009 at 12:35 AM

  There was once a cow named Kirstie. Kirstie lived on a big, green farm with all of her farmyard friends. She enjoyed her life, the endless fields of soft green grass; the gorgeous hills and mountains that bordered the horizon; the cool, clean winter air, or the warm glow of the summer-sun. Yep, Kirstie thought she had it made.

  One particularly sunny February mourning, Kirstie stood grazing with all of her other happy bovine friends, thinking about how fortunate her life was; the generous farmer, his loving wife, and all five of their smiling children. What a lovely life I lead, she thought to herself. I hope it stays like this forever.

 

* * *

  Not far from where Kirstie the Cow was eating. Over by the large timber fence, sat a fat, furry little rabbit named Vincent. Vincent was quite old, by rabbit standards at least. His eyes drooped; and his whiskers were all long and messy. He patted his large rabbit stomach as he munched on some grass roots. As his beady little eyes moved from one cow to the next, he screwed his face up in disgust.

  "Filthy Vermin," he grunted, shoving another paw-full of grass roots into his fat gob. "Dumb animals," he snorted, munching noisily.

  "Oh don't be so harsh Vincent," a sly voice exclaimed from behind him. Vincent turned slowly, not surprised to see Sylvester standing there – a long shred of wheat poking out from between his two bucked teeth. "It's not their fault they don't know a thing about the real world."

  "How do you mean," replied Vincent, turning back to his half-eaten meal.

  "I mean," said Sylvester, slicking his fur back with one paw and hopping up next to Vincent. "I mean that it is not there fault that they're so dumb, simply because no-one ever had the heart to tell them the truth."

  "And what's the truth," Vincent replied, obviously a lot more interested in his meal than what Sylvester had to say.

  "The truth," Sylvester said, leaning up against the wood and peering through the fence. Sylvester now lowered his voice, "The truth is that one day, perhaps soon, every single one of our bovine neighbors will be loaded into a huge, steel truck and driven to a horrible human killing factory known as 'the Slaughter House'." Vincent stopped chewing and looked up from his meal.

  "It is there," Sylvester continued. "That they will suffer a slow and torturous execution. They will be dragged kicking and screaming through the factory. They will be drugged, sprayed, thumped and bashed with mullets. Stabbed, sliced open, and gutted. They will be beaten down until they are nothing more than a bloodied, boneless pile of steaming meat. This meat will then be sprinkled with cheese, drenched in sauce, slapped between bread-buns, and delivered to human eateries all over the land."

  "But tha-that's horrible," Vincent stuttered.

  "Yeah ... well. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a rabbit’s life, Vincent. Some creatures are destined to live behind fences, at the mercy of humankind. But others are destined to live wild and free. Untamed; roaming the earth without a care in the world." Vincent shook his head and went back to eating his meal; somehow it had lost a lot of its flavour. Sylvester remained perched on the fence-guard, his front paws leaning over the edge, his hind legs planted on the ground. His creepy little eyes moving from one cow to the next. "You almost have to feel sorry for the poor, dumb animals."

 

* * *

  "Look at that Kirstie," said one of the younger cows, bobbing her head forwards. Kirstie's head popped up, a mound of dirt still clinging onto a bunch of grass-stems she was chewing.

  "Urhhh!" she cried, swallowing the grass. "Yuck." Over by the fence stood two shifty looking bunny-rabbits. The one closest to the pasture gave Kirstie the creeps. His fur was all greasy and slicked back, and he had a strange look in his eye. The fat one, the one further back, looked older and goofy. He munched greedily on a large mound of grass roots. "I've never liked those rabbits," said Kirstie, bending over for another helping. "I don't know why, I just don't."

  "I wouldn't worry about them," said the younger cow. "The farmer has sprayed the crops with some new extreme-chemical toxin. The rabbit population around these parts should halve in about a month."

  "Oh that's awful," said Kirstie. "As much as I dislike them, no creature deserves to die like that. Should we at least tell them?”

  "No, I don't think so," replied the younger cow. "Let them enjoy what little time they have left. That's just the laws of nature I'm afraid Kirstie, not everyone can live a cow’s life."

Categories: WRITING, Short Stories

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