MourningPosted: August 31, 2011
Yesterday I came home from work to find Marion dead in the coop. It was frightfully upsetting.
Marion was the the godfather chicken of the doodlehouse, the original gangster. We brought her home as a chick last summer and watched her grow from a furry and skittish baby chick to a matronly sweetheart of a chicken. She gave us eggs, nurtured the other fowl we brought into the yard and pecked around the premises with a cheerful personality that made waking up in the morning and coming home after work just a little bit sweeter.
Immediately after stumbling upon her lifeless body in the coop, I was flooded with emotion. Why? It’s hard to say. She was a chicken, not a dog. Heck, we even did in a rooster ourselves. But for some reason this discovery sent a shockwave through the doodle house.
Losing a chicken at the hands (or paws, or claws, or talons) of another animal is incredibly unsettling. Part of my shock, sadness, and frustration was rooted in the realization that, even in my own backyard, I have no control over the savagery that exists in nature. I felt guilty, too. Guilty for allowing it to happen and for giving the chickens the allusion of a safe haven, of a peaceable kingdom, only to leave them susceptible to attack.
In the end I guess you have to shrug it off, sigh, and say “these things happen.” But it doesn’t make the absence of our orange beauty Marion any easier to swallow.