Jul 30, 2010


by Joan Sowards

A friend, who had too many chickens to comply with city ordinance, gave us a young black hen. The new hen makes a great companion to our only hen, Little Red, who is the last of many who have lived in our yard throughout the years. Red is considered an old lady, being past egg-laying stage. Besides providing eggs, chickens control pest populations quite well, including scorpions, so we keep Little Red.

In no time, the new hen’s name became Black. Little Red and Miss Black, cute? She is glossy and beautiful. When she first came, Miss Black appeared full grown, but in the last few weeks, she has grown taller, longer legged, and elegant.

There is nothing you could see strutting across your lawn that is more serene than hens. Looking out the window and seeing those two lovely birds together, I daydream about fresh eggs filling my fridge’s egg tray as soon as Miss Black makes her debut at egg laying. The weeks have whizzed by since she came, and to my disappointment, she's yet to produce and egg.

But, what light in yon window breaks—and what is this noise I hear?


Miss—I mean, Mr. Black?


  1. Oh dear! LOL...will your neighborhood let you keep a rooster? I know in Phoenix we could keep hens, but no roosters were allowed. Thanks for the smile today! Love ya!

  2. We raised chickens when I was little, it happened to us every time. Don't worry, when they're that young, they're really delicious.

  3. Surprise! You made me think of my pet hens when I was a kid.
    "To eat or not to eat that is the question."


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