a true story
My presence makes the little bantam hen nervous. She hides a dozen new babies behind her body as I try to take a picture.
Such a good mother!
The chicks chirp excitedly when I scatter mashed grain into the pen. Then I sit down in a lawn chair to rest and watch them eat.
A noise startles me, so I look up.
Two stray dogs bark while running back and forth on the outside of our chain-link fence. One small tan-colored guy finds a low spot in the dirt and slips beneath the wire. The larger brown one does not have enough room to follow and growls menacingly through the mesh.
A chicken squawks in distress! To my astonishment, the tan mutt grabs our beautiful bantam rooster and then drags the flailing lump of feathers beneath the fence. I stand helpless, watching the animals escape into the distance.
By the time I stumble out of the gate, the culprits are long gone. I don’t know who owns the animals, so I walk up and down the streets, hoping to find our little rooster. I make a lot of noise, trying to bring neighborhood dogs out to bark at me as I pass. But the guilty guy is probably holed up somewhere enjoying his stolen treasure.
Finally, I give up and go home. I plop down into the same lawn chair with a sense of loss.
Life isn’t fair!
The sweet hen always walked around the yard with her star-crossed mate. What will she do now? And what about the babies?
They are still a family without the rooster. The mother hen will take good care of the babies. They will go on.
. . . but my heart is broken.