Tuesday, August 2, 2016

"Backyard Chickens" by Tricia Knoll, Frequent Contributor


Backyard Chickens
Tricia Knoll

We get it!
We get it – no roosters!

The coops go up,
cuter than cute. 

Free-rangers strut
pompons on parade,
stick-legged chicken races
finish photos on Facebook. 

Coyotes
and raccoons sneak
around the condos –
henitentiary fortifications
intensify.

Do senior chickens
who no longer lay
collect social obscurity?
Who broils Flocksie and Tottsie?
The Buddhists won’t. 

But the eggs, the eggs!
Sunshine yolks
nestled in blue, green,
brown and ecru jewel boxes.
The eggs! 

Poet’s Notes:  I farmsit once or twice a year. Many of my neighbors have urban chickens. And the eggs...

The accompanying photo is mine.  The chickens depicted are of Broadfork Farm, Trout Lake, Washington. It's an organic farm where my husband and I farmsit each year for a couple of weeks. At some point I may do a Broadfork Farm chapbook.

Editor’s Note:  I fondly remember driving to the next little hamlet near my hometown in upstate New York and picking up fresh eggs from the local farmer.  It used to take a sledgehammer to break those eggshells, and the yolks were thick and the dark orange color of the setting sun.  Alas, what was once dairy country and farms near my hometown are now banks, condos, and Starbucks shops.

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