WILD DUCK EGGS HATCHED BY CLUCK-HEN
WHAT KIND OF FOWL AM I?/MIXED-UP KID/SCRAMBLING EGGS
One boring day at Grandparents farm, a lad climbed up to a bird nest.
Four robin’s-egg-blue eggs intrigued him. He had a theory to test.
Conventional wisdom sez wild birds abandon eggs, if human touched.
He cradled 1 egg, shinnying down, as a sturdy branch he clutched.
Entrusting it to blackbird’s nest, he filched 1 egg for Robin Red Breast.
Scheming with 3 sparrow eggs, plus a king bird’s nest, each received 3 guests.
All 16 eggs hatched. Surrogate feathered parents? What did they know?His theory did FLY! Not birds of a feather, were perched all in a row.
DUCK NESTS IN HAY FIELDS, EGGS-TRACTING DUCK EGGS
I protected many bird nests. I’d till around a Killdeer nest.
Trained eyes glimpsed camouflaged pebbles & eggs. We searched per parental request.
Wild duck nests in hay marsh or hay field were difficult to detect.
We’d hoped the tractor noise would provoke the hen to flight. I would inspect.
If the nest were disturbed by my mower, I would restore the nest.
Grateful wildlife and waterfowl we considered God’s creatures…and our guest.
We’d savor the fresh aroma of fougere. Hay and clover I’d mow;
And again survey for nesting ducks, raking hay into a windrow.
BRIGHT & CAMOUFLAGED FEATHERS/WISHBONES vs WISHFUL THINKING
Mallard drake’s plumage have chromatic hues, hens have a disguised earth tone.
Nesting hens are well concealed; their whereabouts are scarcely seen or known.
One duck waited too long to take flight. Her plight was a grievous sight.
Near the barn those duck eggs ‘could’ be hatched. I turned off the key.
Eggs cradled in my shirt, I walked home, like a ‘walking on eggshells’ delivery.
I set up the mini brooder coop. Chasing a cluck-hen to and fro,
And placed her on a clutch of duck eggs. Her disposition did mellow.
EGGS-CITED, EGGS-UBERANT, EGGS-CLUDED & EGGS-ASPERATED
Nearly ‘hen-pecked’, that balking, squawking ‘mom-to-be’ would become a quack.
That ‘chick-canery’ alerted my siblings. I ignored my brother’s wisecrack.
With that nesting option she’d have wild duckling adoptions…but no clue.
Soon, across the barnyard she marched her troop…ill timed and toooo near the slough!
Her flock went for a swim. Her mood and her bird-brain became unwound!!
Zany spectacle! Too ‘chicken’ to swim, she paced and scolded with a clucking sound.
Neither was bilingual. Fuzzy ducklings thoroughly enjoyed their swim.
Images in my mind still QUACK me up. No longer proper & prim.
THE YOLK’S ON HER/POULTRY IN MOTION
That dysfunctional fam’ly…such anguish…such ‘fowl’ language, I now know.
That ‘dumb cluck’ just DIDN’T KNOW WHEN SHE HAD ALL HER DUCKS IN A ROW!
Silly? Sight was not all it was cracked up to be.
Orv Alveshere, Copyrighted & published in 1996, Rewrite 12-2006
Orv Alveshere grew up hanging on a horse; “Neighbors claim they never saw us walking,” he says of self and brother, and AKN-BREAK ACRES, where bones broke, horses were trained.
“I’m copyrighted, claim to make nonsense out of sense, sense out of nonsense. Maybe 90% fact, 5% embellishment, 5% fiction.” Orv has written 250 poems at last count, spent 20 years at Medora Cowboy Poetry Gathering, including having done opening acts. He is the winner of three writing contests, had some work nationally published, including “AM AT THE MILLENNIUM: BEST POEMS OF THE CENTURY.” Orv resides in Rancho Mirage, CA.