The Hens

By Elizabeth Madox Roberts

The night was coming very fast;
It reached the gate as I ran past.
The pigeons had gone to the tower of the church
And all the hens were on their perch,
Up in the barn, and I thought I heard
A piece of a little purring word.
I stopped inside, waiting and staying,
To try to hear what the hens were saying.
They were asking something, that was plain,
Asking it over and over again.
One of them moved and turned around,
Her feathers made a ruffled sound,
A ruffled sound, like a bushful of birds,
And she said her little asking words.
She pushed her head close into her wing,
But nothing answered anything.

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