Three baby chimps in the big
city zoo in 1955 were trained
to wear clothes sit at a table
in the arena hold tea parties
to entertain large audiences.
In time the tea parties ceased
the chimps stayed in their
concrete iron barred cage. After
twenty years new zoo managers
under a new city council set about
replacing barred concrete cages
with grassy enclosures under tall
trees with climbing places for
climbing animals. Later a new
troop of chimps arrived used to
living as true free spirited chimps.
The tea party chimps unable to
play, socialise or mate, stayed
separate from the troop.
Asthma carried Susie off at fifty
Ronnie’s old age a few years later.
As each tea party chimp died
the others’ distress increased.
At last only Sally remained.
Yet when introduced to the
troop through the bars she
screamed in further distress.
In her last years in a secluded
cage zoo staff daily visited her
on breaks or in passing till
old age ended her days.