by Chris Mangham
(written December 2005)

Not a good time of year is Advent
For us turkeys throughout the UK
We're worried we might just get chosen
For service on (gulp) Christmas Day

We're trying to keep a low profile
Acting like thin an' ill-fed
It's better that way than being picked from the fray
To be roasted at Christmas instead.

My friend, he's talked of escaping
Though I must say he's easily led
I've told him to give up his bird-brained idea
And go on a diet instead

I dare say he'd pluck up the courage,
But really it's just barefaced cheek
And wi' 'is size there's a limit on how much he'll lose
Goin' joggin' just three times a week

And all of this ducking and diving
Quite ruins our fowl social life
I can't even get to a barn dance
And end up cooped up wi' the wife.

They say us male turkeys are hen-pecked
Outnumbered by female birds
Maybe, but they don't half talk gobbledegook
I wish that they'd use fewer words.

You're thinking we turkeys look spoiled
You're wondering how much do we earn
Well the income we get is just paltry
While t' farmer has money to burn

To us it really is chicken feed
Mind, not that we really could spend
Except perhaps pick up a couple of flights
To Turkey, for me and a friend.

I went last year and t'weather were roastin'
I went wi' mi' girlfriend, Therese
We both plumped for Turkey from t' brochure
We didn't feel quite right about Greece

While t' weather here's decidedly cooler
I've bought me a tight thermal vest
Happen it'll also stop farmer
Stuffing giblets up into me chest

One young turkey, for a joke like
Shouted 'Paxo' and made us all jump
We all ran round like 'eadless chickens
Especially them as was plump

Another of his favourites was 'sausage meat'
The cheeky young turkey looked chuffed
Till one of one of the wiser, old turkeys
Told 'im to go and get stuffed

This larking, it can give us nightmares
It's not something that I'd endorse
And one night I dreamed that I'd fell off me perch
Into t'vat full of cranberry sauce

Of all that might haunt me this Advent
There is nothing worse that I fear
Than bein' on a platter, surrounded by sprouts,
Wi' onion and sage up me rear

It's forgotten we turkeys have feelings
And sometimes I just have a hunch
That I might be bein' weighed up by t' farmer
As potential for somebody's lunch

Once Christmas has passed, though we might sleep at night
A period of cold turkey ensues
And if we're not picked as New Years Day birds
That really does come as Good News

It surely is time to talk turkey
Language is fowl; this is true
But it's time to raise human awareness
Of the plight that we turkeys go through

It's a pity you humans are partial
To white meat from on t' butcher's stall
If you fancied a leg, we could donate one each
But breast meat demands our all

Spare a thought for our nervous existence
When talking within our earshot When we hear bacon rolls, or parsley or thyme
We've visions we're heading for t' pot.

My friend Tom turkey's philosophic
When contemplating his fate
Says he'd rather be t'centre o' Christmas
Than twizzlers on a school dinner plate

That's as maybe, but sort of defeatist
We turkeys should argue our rights
And campaign against exploitation
And pluck up the courage to fight

As a start, we've set up Turkeys United
Of developments we'll keep you abreast
It's a sort of poultry self help group
For us turkeys, who can get depressed

Are you now feeling sorry for turkeys?
Are you wondering if there's owt you can do
To help with the plight of us seasonal fowl?
Well, try goose; it's much easier to chew.

When Christmas is over and New Year has passed
And you've supped all your fresh turkey soup
For all of us birds, who've been saved by being slim
We'll party all night in the coop.

So next time your cruising round Asda
Or Tesco, or t'place where you shop
Resist the temptation to pick up that bird
Save one of me mates from the chop.

Yes, stand by us turkeys this season
You humans, lets all raise a toast
Yes, stand by us turkeys this Christmas
And purchase a hazelnut roast.

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