In the land of bulls

longhorn cattle on a grass field
Photo by Brett Sayles on

In a world not unlike our own,
where one beast dominates others,
trampling the food chain underfoot,
we find a most curious thing.

Deep in the forest where critters hide,
a young man and woman seek shelter,
whether beneath massive trees
or in the shallows of caves,
all the while listening for hooves,
their arms intertwined, always.

They only barely remember, perhaps,
the day their parents were slaughtered.
Their savage, unclean human tribes,
ripped from their woods wholesale,
for the bulls needed meat for a feast.

As time slowly heals their hearts,
they wander the shores, the jungles,
over mountains, through ravines,
together seeing so many things,
only ever with just enough bushes.
Just enough berries and nuts to eat.

f they’re lucky, perhaps a fish,
though the male is clumsy and slow,
for he has no father to teach him.
But time together closes their wounds.

They grow entwined, like healthy vines,
far from where bulls will find them.
Yet there is a foolishness in humans,
when left alone to wander the woods.
The more they love, the braver they are.

So their loving trust deceives them soon.
They roam too far from hidden groves.
How harsh to be a human, a savage,
in this sacred land of sentient bulls.

The lovesick fools scarcely touch sunlight
before they are spotted. The horns blow.
A hunting party falls upon them,
crashing into sight like a wave,
ripping them out of each other’s arms.

The male human puts up a fight,
flailing his weak arms out,
only to be gored by a river of horns.
The young bulls cackle with glee
as they tear him limb from limb,
rendering his corpse more portable.

The female lets loose a shrill cry,
a strange sound only humans make.
Her body falls limp with shock
as the grinning bulls load her up,
heaping her still form onto a cart.

When she awakens, she’ll be on a milk farm,
free to pick any fresh fruit she pleases
from a vast, well-kept garden,
as long as her grieving is silent,
as long as her tiny udders flow.

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