In honor of World Elephant Day this August 12, we wanted to share a moving poem written by 10-year-old Dylan Douglas-Dufresne from the vantage point of an elephant. Dylan grew up in Kenya and has a special bond with these giant majestic creatures. Learn more about elephant conservation through great organizations like the Milgis Trust, run by Dylan’s family, and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, which help protect the wildlife ecosystem in Kenya.
And Still, the Poachers Come…
By Dylan Douglas-Dufresne, age 10
I used to be a wondrous, untamed African Elephant, until the poachers came
I used to wander the golden savanna, until the deadly, despised poachers came, with rifles and horrid motorized vehicles!
I used to have huge gray beautiful ears, until the horrendous, filthy, dirty poachers came, and one by one, struck my friends down, and only I remained.
I loved the relief of rubbing my back on a great acacia tree,
I loved the feeling of the nice cool water on my back on hot savanna days, playing with children, near the waterfall that was my home, my beautiful haven, I will never forget that home, that beautiful home, with all my children.
I’ll never forget that one shot, and the trumpets of my children screaming, and then I saw them, that was it, I’d had enough!
How dare you kill my children and my friends and just leave them there! And then I trumpeted in my rage, LEAVE WITH YOUR GUNS AND BULLETS AND NEVER COME BACK!
I used to be a beautiful African elephant, until the poachers came, and still, the poachers come.
Photograph by Michael Lucas