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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 13, Issue 11 (January 1, 1939)

The Cattle

The Cattle.

In trampled pens the cattle stood
Beneath the day-forsaking skies;
Where sunset flowed in coloured flood,
The cattle voiced their captive cries,
Huddled where late, in sister mood,
Their kin had stared with sombre eyes.
A bovine rumour on the wind—
Sun-sweetened hay and meadow grass,
The drinking pools so cool to find,
Where waters spring as clear as glass;
Dream acres had they left behind,
But desolation, too, must pass.
The hour ran out, the dusk burned red,
With brighter light the road was dyed,
Yet hung each horned, pathetic head
With fear too manifest to hide.
“Were you as we,” their sorrow said,
“You, too, would stand as heavy-eyed.”
A year ago, as told by dreams,
I heard a white-haired prophet claim
That Heaven is rife with fields and streams,
And cattle there have each a name,
With mangers that are lit by gleams
From braziers with a holy flame.

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