Tag Archives: chickens

Husbandry

He talks to chickens
Sometimes with their own sounds
Otherwise in English
Discussing the state of the hen house
The undesirability of chickens entering the house
And pooping on our elderly carpet

They themselves have their own opinions
Apparently
The availability of fresh greens in their diet
The joy of scratching about on the shingle path
The delightful crunchiness of dried meal worms
When I suggest that the girls take part in family decisions
In order to address the gender imbalance
I am rejected
They have their own forum
Talking with my husband each day
True husbandry

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

For Tony….

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Scrabbling

I am scrabbling for a word
To describe the noise of chickens
Scrabbling in the garden

It isn’t rustling
The leaves above are doing that
Rustle is a high pitched word
I need a lower pitich
Mustle, grustle
Tustle is what one hen is doing with a worm

Now there’s a sudden outbreak of snail football
The snail always loses

It’s life

On this sunny late October afternoon
Maybe its scrabbling after all

 

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Robin in the fig tree

Robin in the fig tree

What are the words?
Bright, cheery red, bob-bob-bobbing?
My Robin has read Ted Hughes
He pulls worms fighting from the stiff soil
Terrorises chickens, birds a hundred times his size
Fights to the death for territory
He is now lurking in our small unproductive Fig tree
That leans awkwardly out of a fake ceramic tub
The pigeons by the pond look uneasy

Copyright © 2016 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Hens in the mist

Yes, there are so many different fora and blogs about back garden chickens. But I need to tell you about mine.

They jump.

Sophie, at the grand old age of tree (she’s a hybrid, and so old before her time, she likes early nights now and is no longer a party chicken), can jump almost 2 feet without using her wings. She does this at the gate of their pen, showing her excitement at seeing me come out of the back door. Maybe I will let her out to play in the flower beds! Or even better, the Lettuce patch!

Dave, the other oldster, has taken the two new girls in hand and taught them to jump too. All four girls jump to reach the miniature red gooseberries at the top of the (supposedly inaccessible to hens) standard bush. And all the raspberries which are on 3 foot canes at least, are now gone. Try to visualise oversize dumpy hummingbirds and you are almost seeing what I am currently smiling at.

Yup, these girls could jump for TeamGB . If they accepted chickens, which they don’t and that’s terrible discrimination, shouldn’t be allowed these days…

And yes, Dave is a girl. She lays. Never get a 12 year old boy to name a chicken is my advice.

Oh and the new ones are Zena and Hera. They are party chickens, not wanting to go into the coop until very late, often popping out from it if they hear you creeping across the garden lawn, thus wrecking what is very probably  your fourth attempt to close the coop door. Sigh.