King of the Roost, 15 x 11.5 inches, oil pastel
We have new neighbors who moved in a few months ago; they are a great family and she is related to my husband. But he likes chickens. I don't. When I was a child Dad liked chickens. Had a whole coop full of them. I had to go to the henhouse to gather eggs. They pecked my hands. When they had baby chicks they flogged me. I never forgot. When we were first married Harold's Papa had lots of them. They dug up my flowers. They ate the new growth off my hybrid tea roses and the roses died. All fifteen of them. Gone. They pooped on my porch. Big slick smelly droppings. I don't like chickens. So I was not thrilled when I came home to find a big red rooster strutting around in my yard like he owned the place. When I chased after him flailing my arms and shooing, he still acted like he owned the place. He finally sauntered down the drive to his home next door. As he went down the hill into the neighbor's yard he stopped, looked at me, pulled his head back, stuck out his chest and crowed as if to tell me he would not be bothered with me. After all he is the rooster, and all the hens just cluck after him. He's Elvis of the Chicken Coop! This scenario was repeated many times over the next two or three weeks. Finally, one of our dogs got the message that this red headed rascal didn't have any business in his yard and he took over the task of sending him back home. The ol' boy finally got it through his bird brain that he wasn't welcome at my house. I don't like chickens. So now he stays home. Guards his hens. Crows at dawn. From a distance he's not such a bad neighbor. But I still don't like chickens.