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Wednesday, September 08, 2021


by Martin Elster

GERONIMO the tragic alpaca was dragged from his paddock [on August 31, 0221] and executed by a team of [UK] government officials. The eight-year-old animal, whose plight touched the nation, was shoved in a horsebox and killed with a bolt gun after 25 cops and four Defra [Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs] agents descended on his farm. Geronimo, who Defra claimed had TB, kicked out and appeared distressed as he was pulled away with a rope round his neck at Wickwar, Gloucestershire [UK}. His furious owner said the tragic alpaca’s “barbaric” execution was murder. The eight-year-old animal was dragged to his death by a team of “bully-boy” Defra ­officials after he tried to make a last dash for freedom. The Government claims he had TB but Helen Macdonald, 50, said he was perfectly healthy. She previously vowed to “take a bullet” for her beloved alpaca. —The Sun, August 31, 2021

I felt healthy and hardy.
TB? None, for sure!
Why the gun to my head?
Does that make you secure?

Sniffing hay-scented air,
I was glad when I saw
my owner each day;
but condemned by your law,

a scapegoat alpaca,
I paid a big price.
As for your cold heart,
try melting its ice.

Martin Elster, who never misses a beat, was for many years a percussionist with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. His career in music has influenced his fondness for writing metrical verse, which has appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies in the US and abroad. A full-length collection Celestial Euphony was published by Plum White Press in 2019.