My Personal Poultry Apocalypse Seems most of our hens were dropping dead in pen 3A through out that year. We'd carry their bodies out to the shed, then another corpse would soon appear. In pen 3A through out that year, the mortality rate was rather high. Yet another corpse would soon appear, still another chicken would up and die. The mortality rate was rather high. There was no apparent cause of death, but another chicken would up and die. They'd just squawk and take their final breath. There was no apparent cause of death. In other years, all the hens would thrive. Now they'd squawk and take their final breath. Only a couple dozen would survive. In other years, all the hens would thrive, but now frantic wings clutched at feathered chests. Only a couple dozen would survive. Perhaps they suffered cardiac arrests. After frantic wings clutched at feathered chests, we'd carry their bodies out to the shed. Perhaps they suffered cardiac arrests? Seems most of our hens were dropping dead... Hated by Horses Oh, you were the lucky ones, chased and bit by neighborhood dogs. You do not know what it's like to be hated by horses. It's a social stigma that dogs me still, never to be liked by teenaged girls who rode & adored horses (for me, always the most desirable ones), who shunned me because I wasn't liked by horses, all kind of horses: Thoroughbreds, Clydesdales, even miniature ones the size of your average pet dog. I've been chomped & thrown & kicked by horses all through my life since the age of one. They despise me as if I was the foreman of a dog food factory, attacking me viciously like angels (avenging ones) or feral dogs. No fury like the hatred of teenaged girls or horses.
Paul Szlosek is a poet residing in Worcester, Massachusetts, and co-founder and co-host of The Poetorium at Starlite Featured Poetry Reading Series & Open Mic in the nearby town of Southbridge. A past recipient of the Jacob Knight Award for Poetry, his poems have appeared in numerous publications including the Worcester Review, Worcester Magazine, Sahara, Concrete Wolf, and Diner. Paul’s probably best known in the Worcester poetry community for his fanatical obsession with obscure poetry forms, and has invented his own including the ziggurat, the streetbeatina, and the hodgenelle which he shares on his blog Paul’s Poetry Playground @ https://playground.poetry.blog.