Bringing the Hens Home

With no plan in mind but hurrying to get there,
we greeted the woman who had raised them,
helped to disassemble the run. We wedged it all
like tetrominoes into the boot of the Jazz.
It was never going to fit. A bit of rope to secure it.
A breath of relief. The rush of collection over,
and only the open road, our packed-up parcel
to consider, I drove carefully, avoiding A-roads.

You couldn't drive us, seat slid so close to wheel
you couldn't fit, so you hummed softly to calm us.
We strained to listen for them, locked up in their box,
to hear our first cluck or coo. But the car was silent,
only creaking with the strain of an impractical load,
the air rushing under the hatchback flap as we drove,
and three small lives, in a plastic box, shuffling quietly
in darkness towards their new home.