I sat on a grassy bank near a badger warren in late summer putting this poem together, but the pen/ink drawing was first. I was moved by something said on a lunchtime news bulletin on the radio about gassing badgers. I found an A1 size piece of paper, taped it to the kitchen wall and started drawing in pencil. It took a month to complete. The jury was out then on whether badgers spread TB. It is still controversial.
Who are you man?Entering our stillness as you will.Go home and watch T.V.Have you not enough troubles of your own?Leave us alone to dieWe do not understand why you do this to us.Tell us what we are doing wrong?We want to live at peace with you.We have lived here for centuries.We follow the same trails.Eat the snails that hurt your crops.Keep our distance from you.Who started this war?You cannot prove we are bringersof destruction.We have no weaponsWe only want peace.We will not fightMy family is in mourning.Why must you tear at us with your dogs?Trap us in cages,Break down our homes.A great depression fills our warren.A darkness is spreading..Despair..despair..Is your life so difficult for youThat you must do this?Will it make things better for youIf we go quietly.Then we willFor we have such fond memoriesWe were free onceTo wander through the evening dewTo build our homes togetherAnd play with our cubsWithout a care in the world.What have we done?What have we done?Badger Poem by Neil Mawdsley Aug.97