a poem by Edmund Vance Cooke (1866-1932)
Since that poem was written, many
people have awakened
We called him “RAGS.” He was just a cur, but twice on the Western
That little old bunch of faithful fur had offered his life for mine.
And all that he got was bones and bread or the leavings of soldier grub,
But he’d give his heart for a pat on the head or a friendly tickle and
But we mustered out, some to beer and gruel, and some to sherry and
And I went back to the Sawbones school where I was still an undergrad.
One day they took us budding M.D.s to one of those institutes
Where they demonstrate every new disease by means of bisected brutes.
They had one animal tacked and tied and slit like a full-dressed fish,
With his vitals pumping away inside as pleasant as one might wish.
I stopped to look like the rest, of course, and the beast’s eyes
His short tail thumped with a feeble force, and he uttered a tender
It was Rags, yes, Rags! who was martyred there; who was quartered and
And he whined that whine which is doggish prayer and he licked my
And if there’s no heaven for love like that, for such four-legged
If I have any choice, I tell you flat, I’ll take my chance in hell.
Perhaps that poem had a part in that. Many compassionate people
have been horrified about animal experimentation in medical schools and
opposed it over the centuries. PCRM.org
and other modern groups
have done amazing work helping medical and veterinary schools find
alternatives to such barbaric torture of our brother and sister
animals. Today 96% of U.S. medical schools no longer use live
animals in medical student training. That is something to
celebrate and a clear and promising indication that when we speak for
the animals, things get better for them.
Dedicating our tears and prayers this
week to the animals and the experimenters
Still there is much left to do, and, of course, there is still animal
experimentation going on for drug testing and many other abominable
practices. This week let us collect our tears for the suffering
of experimental animals and create a river of compassion that flows
around the world to bless them all and give them some comfort.
Let us envision this symbolic river washing over the scientists
and technicians and purifying their hearts and minds. This pure
water that is made of the tears of love opens their eyes to the truth
of who these animals are, and one by one they will find ways to end
these tortures forever, wash the blood and violence from their hands,
and finally find peace for themselves and the animals.
We give thanks for this purifying love that is in everything
everywhere; love that we can draw upon at any time to send to the
animals and to the experimenters. We give thanks that these
people, like Edmund and like ourselves, can and will wake up. We
give thanks also for the many sanctuaries that are available to give
compassionate homes to the animals who are liberated from the hell of
science. We give thanks for PCRM
and all the other groups working
so hard to free the animals. It is happening. It is real,
because it is Love.
With Love, peace, and gratitude from Judy, and Will, Madeleine, and the Circle of Compassion team.
If you haven’t already done so, please join us at the Prayer Circle for Animals facebook page.
(Your donations allow us to continue and expand this prayer ministry)