house of happy

Life adventures in prose and verse. Explorations of places, people and words. Stories and fun.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Galo Desaparecido

One line: We had a rooster, now we don't.

Two lines: A friend decided our four hens needed a rooster, and somehow got us one. It stayed in the coop for half an hour, then fled. We couldn't catch it, then it was gone.

More lines: It was a beautiful rooster, burgundy feathers and a shiny black tail, bald neck and fiery eye. He arrived in a very undignified package, a white linen sack sent over by an old woman in a nearby village. Once let out, he took over the chicken enclosure with an arrogant gait and low, lofty clucking. Three of our four ugly hens fell silent and got out of the way. One of the harem stood up to him feebly, which made us consider the possibility that it might not be a hen after all. The big guy didn't appear to notice, just ruffled his glorious feathers and sang.

We sighed with pleasure and left them to it. As soon as our backs were turned the red rooster flew out and sauntered to freedom. For the first couple of days he still hung about the land. We tried to catch him, twice, with terror in our hearts because he was fast and fierce. On the whole we were running around, making insane sounds, wading through bramble patches, climbing rocks, waving sticks, sweating and swearing – while he just turned tail and ambled grandly to some other remote part of the garden. Easy.

Once we had him cornered in the outdoor shower. He turned slowly and glared, before flying right over our heads and, I swear, clucking something obscene over his wing while he disappeared round the corner. One late evening we found him asleep in the sink, and still he evaded us. It was almost dark, pouring rain, there were five on our side, all giving chase, none coming within miles of him.

At this point, thoroughly disgusted, he marched off the land and was gone for good. There were sightings somewhere down the valley, perhaps on someone's dinner table? I wonder sometimes. In any case, I don't hold any hope that he'll be back to rule his kingdom-of-four any time soon.


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