Passing a Truck Full of Chickens At Night on Highway Eighty

Passing a Truck Full of Chickens At Night on Highway Eighty

What struck me first was their panic.

Some were pulled by the wind from moving
to the ends of the stacked cages,
some had their heads blown through the bars—

and could not get them in again.
Some hung there like that—dead—
their own feathers blowing, clotting

in their faces. Then
I saw the one that made me slow some—
I lingered there beside her for five miles.

She had pushed her head through the space
between bars—to get a better view.
She had the look of a dog in the back

of a pickup, that eager look of a dog
who knows she’s being taken along.
She craned her neck.

She looked around, watched me, then
strained to see over the car—strained
to see what happened beyond.

That is the chicken I want to be.

— Jane Mead, author of The Lord and the General Din of the World
T.S. Poetry
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4 thoughts on “Passing a Truck Full of Chickens At Night on Highway Eighty

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      1. It struck me as kind of sad, until I got to that note of optimism. There’s a bird who’s going to make the most out of life, even if it’s getting close to the end. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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