Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Fable

Here's my version of the fable I mentioned in this post, just for fun.

Eagles and Chickens

Once there was an eagle who thought he was a chicken. He scratched and pecked in the barnyard alongside all the other chickens and roosted in the coop at night. But he always felt that this barnyard life was too small for him, that he was called to something bigger. He saw birds flying overhead and felt a deep ache in his breast as if he had lost something important but couldn't remember what it was.

When he brought this up to other chickens they said, "What are you doing looking up anyway? Keep your eyes on the ground or you'll miss the crumbs and bugs that keep us alive."

"Being alive is great," he thought, "but what are  we alive for?" He couldn't stop asking questions or looking up at the wide open sky.

Then one day the farmer came, grabbed up a chicken by the legs and took it away squawking and flapping. The other chickens fluttered nervously for a few seconds but then went right back to scratching and pecking. Eagle had seen this before but never questioned it. Now he couldn't get the questions out of his mind. "Where did brother chicken go?" he asked several others. They all shrugged. "This is life. Why are you questioning it?"

The next Sunday the farmer came again. This time Eagle jumped and pumped his wings and suddenly found himself on the other side of the fence. He followed and watched as the farmer chopped off the chicken's head, plucked its feathers and carried the naked remains into the house.
He ran back and jumped the fence. He had to tell the other chickens what was going on. He was sure there would be a revolt of some sort.

But there was no revolt. Not even a protest. When Eagle got them all gathered and told them, he realized they already knew. They shook their heads at him and said, "Stop jumping the fence. What's the matter with you?"

He was so frustrated he flapped his wings again furiously. He found himself propelled up powerfully and hovered there looking down at the chickens. That was the moment he realized he wasn't a chicken. And though he had no idea what he was or where he was going, he knew he wouldn't be sleeping in the coop that night. He kept on flapping until the farmhouse was just a tiny speck beneath the endless sky.

Back in the barnyard the chickens shook their heads, clucked their tongues and went back to pecking and scratching the ground.

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