A Tale of Two Chickens
A small hut set high at the foot of Tien
Sheltered Lu, his wife, Li, and their infant, Shenyen
They fished, they grew rice, ate eggs from their hens.
Days of labor met nights with sweet song winter wren
Chickens’ ways varied if in or out of their pen.
When in, each hen favored nests and roosters
Out, hens switched nests and were chased by all suitors
Nests filled with eggs and the humans ate well.
One winter’s midnight, attacked by a cougar
Scattered the flock, some escaped, some did not
Mimi and Oso flew ’til they found a dark spot
Li and Lu’s winter blue there were fewer
Fluffed in cave’s corner, not frozen, not hot
Mimi and Osho pecked scraps from the bone
Piles left by grizzly in between stones
From chaff blown in made a cozy spot
New life, new ways was what they now owned
And from these things, new life was made in fresh eggs
Mimi crooned, was at peace, and dreamed of nutmeg
Oso’s talons grew sharper, protective skills honed
Then it began, chicks hatched without end
Peep fuzzies, morning sun’s warmer weather
By the thaw all dozen had feathers
Loved by their parents, learned light was a friend.
Spring on the mountain brought bees with the heather
Chicks learned tasty food played in the sun
Now in the open they learned how to run
As they traveled Tien together
Bjorn is the host of dVerse today. Bjorn says:
[T]oday I want you to invent new metaphors, try to surprise, combine them and paint your emotions or feelings in the you like (which is actually a cliche in itself). Do not hesitate to make them complex.
The poem is quatrain form with an envelope rhyme scheme of abba, bccb, cddc, deed, etc.
Image: “Rooster, Hen and Chicks” by Shoson Ohara