Rooster’s big day

Rooster opens an eye. Dark. Of course. Gently, he ruffles his feathers, shifts his feet, opens both eyes. Clears his throat. Big day ahead. As usual. He will eat and drink later: now, there’s work to do.

He hears movement and knows the black hen is peering toward him. She likes to watch him work, likes to witness his skill, likes to be there for the first moment to know he has succeeded once again.

Rooster hops down from the rail and walks out the door of the coop to the wire fence. The end of the moon tosses a little light into the yard, and the stars wink. Goodnight, Rooster tells them, Your work is done. Sleep. He hears the black hen walk into the yard behind him. Then he clears his throat again, settles his feathers, and begins.

He knows he has timed it perfectly. He’s been at this for years. As a young cock he was sometimes hasty, started early, worked too hard. It is hard work, it takes stamina, but he knows his job and he never falters, never fails. And after the first big haul, it only takes a little well-timed effort here and there during the day until it’s time for night again.


Rooster pauses for a breath. One more. ERRR-a-ERRRRRRRRRRR! And there. The thinnest slip of pale golden light appears behind the trees on the far horizon. Rooster nods. The black hen sits down. ERRR-a-ERRR-a-ERRRRRR!, cries Rooster, as he pulls the sun into the sky.

6 thoughts on “Rooster’s big day

    1. I can still crow like a rooster the way Granddaddy Jim taught me. Maybe if I ever lose my other day job…


  1. Positively delightful. Love “the end of the moon tosses a little light into the yard” among so many other things. And that’s one hell of a an ERRR-a-ERRRRRRRRRRR! Good job, backhoe! And my thanks to Grandaddy Jim. 😉


    1. N-W, that is one of my favo(u)rite lines too. This story just appeared as I ran along the misty road at dawn, listening to the roosters crow at my friends’ farm. It was almost like a tied-in-a-bow package, hardly any work at all. Don’t you love when they present themselves that way? And Granddaddy Jim would like your way with language, as I’m sure I’ve said before.


  2. Ha! I spent yesterday morning listening to a strangled cockerel. What would the black hen say if his crow came out like that?!?!
    Such a glorious imagery and so beautifully written. Thank you. Xxx


    1. Ha. I’m not sure if the black hen would have the same take on this story, frankly. Maybe she sees Rooster differently than he sees himself. I read about your cockerel, you make me laugh. Thank you, Vicki! xxx


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