It is Day 20 of the Slice of Life Challenge at Two Writing Teachers to post a slice each day in March.  So far, so good.

Today's word is hatch at Heidi Mordhorst's My Juicy Little Universe.  It should have been my easiest, but my mind would not work on it yesterday.  Too many other things going on, I guess.  So I am up fairly early and pulling up the draft, I see where I need to go.  And so the poem is done below. I also realize from writing it, I do have a slice.  It's a slice from my childhood.  There are actually a few stories about my city-raised-moved-to country parents and their chickens.

But today

When we first moved out to our "farm" in Maine it had a small chicken coop there.  It was short enough and small enough that we wanted to use it as a playhouse.  We spent some time cleaning it out as I recall, but that wasn't fun at all, so we spent time on the roof instead.  Actually, my brother did.  I went up once.  It was a gorgeous view from up there.  You could see our house (not too far away), the driveway (right beside the house), the field (that was right beside it) and down into the burdocks on the side of the coop you couldn't get to from the ground because you would have to walk through burdocks to get there.  The roof was fairly flat and square with tarpaper on it, so it was warm to lie down on.  We spent quite a bit of time up there just being up high, my brother and I. And then it was time for supper or lunch or some meal.  Mom called us.  That's when I discovered I couldn't get down.  I was frozen in fear when I realized I would have to turn around and put my legs over the edge to get on the ladder.  No amount of coaxing would get me down off that chicken coop roof.  My mother finally had to come up to the top of the ladder, so I could feel that she was right there behind me making sure my feet were planted firmly on the rungs.  What a comfort to have a strong parent there to surround you when you are feeling weak and vulnerable.  I never really got to see the chicken coop from an adult's perspective.  I'd wager the highest point was probably 6 feet off the ground...maybe less.  But when you are small, everything looks big.

Rhode Island Queen

Dipping her head to the ground
the old queen nods
to her subjects
this way
and that
her long train
flowing behind
over the ground -
my old red hen
whom I thought was lost
has returned again
from sitting
on a hidden nest
for just the right moment
for them to
as she nears
undulating train
becomes a scurrying
fuzzy, feather quilt of chicks
blanketing her bare

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

And one more, a Hatch Haiku about how much I like cooked egg whites....I won't even talk about uncooked egg whites:

Down the Hatch

Chewing egg whites - yuck!
Tiny flavorless bits that
won’t go down the hatch.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015

Oh, wait...an egg song written by my 3 year old grandson (Yea! Already a poet/song writer!):


Egg, egg,
But I can't eat the egg
cause it's a baby.
@F.O.T., 2015

If you have read down this far, you must like poetry, or at least are willing to give it a try, so come join in the fun of Poetry Friday hosted today by: Catherine at Reading to the Core.


  1. "the old queen nods...' love this image. I really don't mind egg whites...especially if hey are part of a meringue pie or angel food cake. :-)

    1. Yes, the egg whites of which you speak, are a different story entirely. Yes, make mine meringue or angel food cake, please!

  2. What a charming image you have created with "Rhode Island Queen"! Love it, Donna.


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