way poem #5: the five steps to wheaten pecks

he progresses
five steps at a time
to reach a wall
a fence
that he can lean on

air that tastes
so sweet
is hard these days
to come by

a moment of rest
till the gasps calm down
to regular breathing
then
five steps more

and five steps more
again

it’s important to keep moving
even though the atmosphere
is so thin
down here
on planet earth
and the small brown hen
the last remaining hen
is waiting

she has no flock
to be part of
they have passed away
one by one
to a cat
to a fox
to a feather depleting
decrepitude

and now she waits
for the shuffle
of him
beside the yard gate

in her nest
is an egg

he sits beside her laying box
on a chair he placed
some time ago
to one side

in his hand
a covered palm
of golden wheat

she dainty steps
until she can stand
upon him
on his knees
to take each grain
one peck
one peck at a time
until they’re gone

and then she leaves him
and goes to forage the yard
again

and he
can take his five steps
all the way back
to the rest
of his life


© Frank Prem, 2016

Poem #30: way poem #6: perhaps by questions

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