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Cargo has let down

her hair a little and stopped pushing

Pliny the Elder on

the volunteer labour

During summer it was all Pliny the Elder,

Pliny the Elder, Pliny

the – she’d cease only

for scotch thistle, stale Cheerios, or to reflect

flitty cabbage moths

back at themselves

from the wet river-stone of her good eye. Odin,

as you already know,

was birthed under

the yew tree back in May, and has made

friends with a crow

who perches between

his trumpet-lily ears like bad language he’s not

meant to hear. His mother

Anu, the jennet with

soft hooves of Killaloe, is healthy and never

far from Loki or Odin.

The perimeter fence,

the ID chips like functional cysts slipped

under the skin, the trompe

l’oeil plough and furrowed

field, the UNHCR feed bag and visiting

hours. These things done

for stateless donkeys,

mules, and hinnies – done in love, in lieu of claims

to purpose or rights –

are done with your

generous help. In your names. Enjoy the photo.

Have a safe winter

outside the enclosure

Autumn News from the Donkey Sanctuary

Ken Babstock

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