MY LITTLE HEN
April 19, 2012 in Miscellaneous
I walked out of my house about a week and a half ago, only to be confronted by this beautiful hen. I had no idea where she came from and automatically assumed that she belonged to the neighbors. As it turned out, I don’t think that was the case.
After my initial shock, I started taking a liking to my new found hen. She was sweet, mellow in personality, and laid an egg after a day or so. My wife requested that I go to the local feed store and buy some food and before I knew it, it became apparent that she had adopted us and was very much at home roaming around our yard, though I couldn’t find any more eggs. That is, until I was looking for her one day and found her tucked in under a rose-bush along with 6 new eggs. At this point, I decided it was time to build her a coop since we’d had a terrific thunderstorm and I wanted to protect her from the elements. I picked up the materials and made her a hasty shelter, for the storm had passed, and planned on making a more permanent coop over the weekend.
Sunday morning i went out to feed my little hen and start building her coop. I looked around and didn’t see her. I looked where she’d been laying eggs and she was nowhere to be found. I started to walk around and see where else she might be hiding when all of the sudden, to my horror, there she was, a crumpled mass of dead feathers, entrails gone, her guts and the meat on her bones consumed, and the yellow yolk of the egg she was about to lay, exposed and broken.
No, no, no, I thought, this just couldn’t have happened, this just could not be true. But sure enough, true it was. I’d failed her, I’d failed to keep her safe. As I looked at the remains of what just the day before had been my little Rhode Island Red hen, several thoughts crossed my mind and still haunt me. First, what remained as a rendered corpse was eerily devoid of the life that physical body, the personality it had once housed, and second, a line from Anne Rice’s book “Memnoch the Devil,” God’s savage garden.