Life on the farm is an exciting adventure for kids. We experienced many things and learned much about life and farming there. My Dad and Mom were enamored with raising chickens. Of course, the end result was fresh eggs and fried chicken. It is a part of life that I miss today.
However, my brother, Denny, and I did not share the same feelings for chickens as our parents did. We set out to rid our farm of the scourge of chickens! We had no love for fowl. We would often ride our bikes through a flock of chickens merely minding “chicken” business. It would be in those times that we would take a tumble off of our bikes as one would get caught in the spokes of our tires.
In the midst of the flock, there was an old rooster who we would tease unmercifully. Sometimes, he would run after us on our bikes. We thought this was great because we had him “on the run.” We would take sticks and try to hit him or throw clods at him. Many times we hit the mark. What we didn’t realize then was that we were programming or conditioning that old bird to retaliate against us!
There were times when we didn’t have any intention of teasing or tormenting him, but he remembered! It seemed, at times, that he was stalking us as we walked across the yard. In fact, now he had us “on the run.” We were on his level and in his territory!
One particular crisp spring morning, I got up early to do my chores. I never even gave
the old rooster any thought as I proceeded to the barn. My thoughts were on baby calves,
kittens, and playing with our dog; when out of the corner of my eye, I saw a “spring chicken” rooster running toward me flapping his wings.
I knew right then and there I was in trouble. He picked the day and the fight! I turned around and tried to run back to the house, but I felt like I was “running in place.” Now its one thing to ride bikes, tease and taunt, and yet another to stand and face your foe. Obviously, I was the chicken now!
The old rooster hated me. He was crowing and I saw his wings lifting up running after me; when to my chagrin and to his joy he took off in flight and landed on my shoulders. His claws dug into my back with his wings flapping in my ears. He was in a wicked mood. He wanted to hurt me which he did by pecking my head. By the time I reached my Dad, I was bloodied by his pecks. I stopped, but the old rooster didn’t. I looked up and saw my Dad with a grin on his face, apparently enjoying this ridiculous sight! The old rooster was so focused on me and his revenge, that he didn’t even notice my Dad putting his gloves on to grab him. With one big swoop, Dad grabbed the rooster and chopped his head off.
The old rooster had his day of revenge alright, but that night at supper he was a tough act
to swallow, if you know what I mean?