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Celtic Angels

In the Arms of the Angels

A Tribute to all my ladies

A sea of gold on an horizon of green

Feathers askew and in need of a preen

Breathing fresh air a novelty still

feeling the breeze, saved from the kill

These happy hens released from their fate

clucking contentment from early to late

learning to trust and live life to the full

completely contrary to their previous rules

Chatting and giggling while bathing in dust

a stretch in the sun is a henny’s first must

Stretching their wings with space for flap

Scratching the dirt and taking a nap

No pressure to lay, no deadline on life

free to be hens, free from their strife

Each day is a blessing, a borrowed moment of time

precious in nature, Gods Angels, divine.

This is a poem about 2 hens in a battery farm who lived together all their lives but had a very different ending. I dedicate it to all the hens that I cant save.

Oh dear God please help me, I think I’m going insane

I dream of things I’ve never known, things that have no name

There’s something deep inside me that tells me they are real

I know I’ve never seen them but I feel them all the same

I live here in my cruel world with so many other hens

We share this one big room which is divided into pens

Sometimes I get a glimpse of light and this is when I dream

Of sweet fresh air and muddy ground and grass so lush and green

There are so many hens in here yet still I feel alone

I long to open up my wings and fly to another home

I have a little friend in here and we talk about these things

But she tells me to be careful and not to live on dreams

Now I hear strange noises, I don’t know what's going on

The men are getting boxes, I can see them down the run

If I stretch my head outside the wire, I see the open doors

Where is it they are taking us. Please God, what lies in store.

Is this what I’ve dreamed of, are they setting us free?

Or is it something sinister they don’t want other humans to see.

Roughly grabbed, my leg hurts, squashed and crushed, with no care.

Thrown into a filthy box, so cramped there is no air.

I see a glint of something blue from the corner of my eye.

There is no space to turn to look, but I think it might be sky!

There’s boxes up above me and boxes down below

They’re also to my left and right, how many I don’t know?

My heart is really pounding, I’m feeling sick with fear

Where is it we are going? What are the sounds I hear?

Suddenly its quiet, we seemed to have come to a stop

Is this our final destiny- Freedom or the pot!

Our boxes have been unloaded and we are left to sit and wait

One by one the crates are moved, closer to our fate

Suddenly the lid opens, I’m grabbed by a humans glove

This time it feels much softer, this time I sense the love.

Gently I am carried, held close in someone’s arms

I’m taken to a table where I’m told of all my charms

I’m shown love and given food, caressed and settled down

I hope my friend is somewhere here among this sea of brown.

The things that I have dreamed of they really do exist

The chance to run and spread my wings and sunbathe in the dust

I haven’t seen my best friend since the day we left that farm

But I hope she found the same as me and didn't come to harm

Our boxes have been unloaded and we are left to sit and wait

One by one the crates are moved, closer to our fate

Suddenly we are lifted and the box emptied upside down

There are so many hens in here, I think I’m going to drown

I cannot tell what's up or down and every part of me is hurt

All I can see is feathers and all I can smell is dirt

A human hand has grabbed me and has hung me on a rack

Oh God please help me, Oh God please take me back!

I’m being carried through this room hung up by my toes

The fear is overwhelming, there are hens in one long row

Suddenly a searing pain as a sharp edged metal knife

rips across my outstretched neck and tries to end my life

Somehow I’m still living, but I wish it all would end

I feel the blood draining out of me, I know I’m near the end

I hope my friend escaped this, I hope she escaped this fate

Dear God, Please help her, I hope it’s not too late.

Barbara Mladek 18/05/12

This second poem is about the living conditions of a caged hen

I was sentenced to an eternity of suffering and pain

I’ve been bred to lay a thousand eggs for the sake of human gain

I lay these eggs in two short years, no wonder I feel tired!

Then I’m sent to a painful death, I don’t even get retired

It’s not a life I would have chosen, nor one that I deserve

I’m packed into cold a steel cage with sixty others birds

I didn't have the choice, I couldn’t choose my friends

we are packed into these cages, forced together to the end

The boredom drives me crazy, the same thing every day

We’re given food and water which will keep us on the lay

There really is no privacy, no place for quiet time

Just a forced companionship with other crazed hens minds

The suffering started early, I was only ten days old

when they tortured me for my own good, or that’s what I’ve been told

A heavy hand did grab me and held my head so tight

Forced me into a metal plate with a searing burning light

It severed through my beak, my squeals were all in vain

Blood ran down my face and I passed out with the pain

I woke up in a bucket, drowning under other chicks

Some of them didn't make it, their beaks cut to the quick

I was poured into a cage with all the others just like me

Still only little babies and already suffering mans cruelty

As time moved on our beaks grew back, but not as God intended

The worst deformed just couldn’t eat and so their short life ended

Those of us that survived the torture learned to live in fear

and were moved to larger cages for the remainder of our years

sixty hens together with nothing to keep us amused

Existing in a hellhole and constantly abused

Then comes our final “birdsong” now we’ve passed our best

we are going for depopulation without ever seeing a nest

we gave you everything we had, and still you took much more

with no respect or decency you just send us out the door

The death that comes is violent, no sympathy nor respect

the thanks for what we’ve given you is delivered in neglect

I can’t believe God created us, to be tortured in this way

cast aside like worthless junk to be replaced with younger lays

I’ve heard about these places that take you at the end

some say it’s just a rumour, some say they heard it from a friend

Places where your taken to and allowed to run and play

to learn to scratch and dust bathe and lay eggs in nests of hay.

I pray to God each morning that the rumours can be true

and ask if I can go there when my laying days are through

All I ask for after all I’ve given is some time to call my own

And find a loving family in a new forever home.

Barbara Mladek 20/05/12

For Beautiful Becky

Becky's Words

Look at my face, don’t turn away

This was created by man on my tenth day

My body is thin but my mind is alert

My face is deformed but my soul is intact

For two long years I’ve suffered in pain

Fighting for food, just enough to sustain

The pain that I felt as they cut off my face

with their legalised cruelty, its such a disgrace

Look at my face, don’t turn away

This was created by man on my tenth day

Look at my face, don’t turn away

Look into my eyes and love me this way

See into my soul and see how I forgive

the torture and pain, I just want to live

I was saved from the depths by a kind human soul

I was given freedom from a living hell hole

They adjusted my beak to help me to eat

and feed me wet food I can pick up in my beak

Look at my face, don’t turn away

This was created by man on my tenth day

Barbara Mladek

Nut House Hen Rescue & Rehoming is the trading name for Northern Ireland Battery Hen Rescue, Company Number NI611869 & Registered in Northern Ireland. Registered address is The Nut House, 16 Nut Hill Road, Moira, BT67 0PH. Northern Ireland Battery Hen Rescue is a non profit organisation registered with NI Charity Commission. Charity Number NIC104929