So, I hadn’t seen her for 2 days before I realised she was gone.
It’s not that I deliberately don’t notice her. It’s just that she’s one of a gang of 3. They all kinda look the same. And pretty self sufficient. Coming and going as they please, they run their own gig. I’ve looked at them collectively every day for a couple of years now – without seeing them.
Really seeing them.
But then I noticed there were 2 sleeping sisters, not 3. I didn’t know which one had gone. This confirmed when I checked their perch secretly at night. With my head-torch on I whispered to my lover, “one of the chooks has gone.”
I was reassured my small folk wouldn’t notice. The novelty of the egg collection had dwindled. To the point now where the hormones pumping out daily eggs have all but gone. Leaving our feathered posse content to simply scratch around the street and crap at my front door.
Or occasionally break into our neighbours house and sleep in her bed.
Of course my smalls saw the loss. Even though they hadn’t said the word chicken for 6 months – for some random reason they decided on a game called “chicken fun day.” The premise of the game being that you grab all the breakfast cereal packets you can find in the cupboard, open them out and turn them into chicken rollercoasters. Holding said chicken on said opened out box, you run around the backyard screaming “weeeeee!”
Because apparently chickens like rollercoasters made of Aldi cornflake boxes.
My eldest wise one dragged her nose out of Enid Blyton wanting to play. And said, “where’s my chicken?”
My lover and I sat down and told her the news. How her chicken hadn’t come home one night. How her chicken was somewhere we couldn’t go. How her chicken was in a place we didn’t know.
Think forward folds, balance and dynamic inversions.
It’s kinda hard to explain things we don’t understand. To talk about things we don’t know. Loss is uncomfortable. It’s hard to find the right words. Because loss is the unknown. And the unknown can be scary.
Because when you lose something you love, you lose a little bit of yourself.
And there can be no guarantees you can get that bit back.
I’ve been wondering lately, about love. About loss. About the unknown mystery that weaves itself between the two. How we can look without seeing. How we can listen without hearing. How we can scream silently that life has served up enough for just now – and then it serves up another piece.
The rawness makes us real. The realness makes us human. The humanness makes us love as strongly and as fiercely as we dare to allow ourselves to feel.
And for this – there are no words.
The full moon bought our chicken home. With much clucking she had some greens. And some cuddles from my eldest wise one. She scratched and she crapped. And then she went away.
I don’t understand where she went. Or where she goes. I don’t know why she doesn’t stay. But we’re all happy when we see her. We accept the mystery around her.
I accept the mystery within us.