and the Lovely Lyzette
A Tragedy in Too Many Parts
Scarcely have I regretted anything more than my tragic and ill planned interference in the affairs of Horace Greeley and Lyzette.
I wonder, occasionally, how things would have turned out if I had stayed my inclination, just for once, to always have the last word..the upper hand etc.... Could things have been different.. Would all that tragedy have been averted or perhaps just postponed? It doesn’t bear thinking about as the deed was done and cannot now be altered.
But like all regrets..mine are gnarled and tortured with thoughts of the
Horace Greeley, or Greeley as he soon came to be called, was a magnificent creature..a Drake of the Muskogee tribe in full manhood with a great deep grey chest, a broad smoothly feathered back and that wondrous red Muskogee knob that grew across the top of his slick black bill and down the side of each cheek. His flock.. (there for awhile I thought it was my flock) consisted of four sturdy and matronly hens, Edgar the over-grown half-breed drake who lived out his life at the periphery of Greeley and his grand dames, and the lithe and lovely Lyzette.
Lyzette was also a halfbreed but the better for it. She was small, sleek..and like I said, lithe with a gentle and graceful demeanor. She was not a bit uppity and never lorded it over the older and plainer ladies as they moved ponderously and seriously about the tasks
In the normal course of events I would never have been aware of Greeley’s management of his little flock but early that first spring, after a week or two of Greeley’s rather harsh and violent attentions, the hens began to lay large, white eggs willy-nilly all over the yard and barnyard. I herded the little group into the small yard between the house and the barn, rigged an open-faced, sloped roof shelter, filled a rubber feed pan with water and hoped the hens would take to motherhood.
How he did this was simple but a little awesome. Every morning he herded them, one at a time, to the rubber feed pan of water and if they didn’t get in he would grab them by the neck and flog them with a two-foot wing until they did, whereupon he would dribble water over their backs with his bill and nibble under and around each wing to make sure it was wetted. As often as not this would incite him to a little play time but as soon as his lust was satisfied the hen would be driven back to the pile of eggs where she was expected to stay. And stay they did.
I saw him do this morning after morning. The purpose of the water was to keep the eggs moist I guess, an important component in the hatching of duck and goose goslings.
But Lyzette was totally exempt from
And in the warm afternoons..when Muskogees take their rest, Greeley and Lyzette would lie breast to breast and he would allow her to rest her small white head upon him right at that juncture where the wing connects to the body and she would doze and he might doze but mostly he watched for Edgar.
But Edgar..poor Edgar.. My heart was moved by the vicious attacks inflicted upon him. His loneliness haunted me. To see a creature so alone but not alone was sad and needed a remedy. Or so I thought. And so the dye was cast.
I decided four hens were enough for
To achieve this goal I created a pen within a pen around the communal mound of eggs where the four hens were ensconced and herded
Thinking they would adjust to this arrangement I went into the house to shower.
But I had grossly misjudged Edgar’s character. Just out of the shower and standing at the tall windows on the north side of the house, I witnessed the rape of Lyzette.
Edgar, once having understood that
I kicked at Edgar and cursed the day he was hatched and he merely shrugged as all creatures with small souls do when caught in some dastardliness but how was I to know his soul was so small? Oh, how was I to know?
I tore the fence down and hoped
Who knows what goes on in
For a few days Lyzette followed dejectedly behind