"E cantou a cantiga do Infinito numa capoeira" 
(Fernando Pessoa)

Who sang his anthem to Infinity in a chicken coop?  Of course, those who understand the lyrics best, that is, the chickens.  They were my childhood's first experience with insomniacs.  Their flat, greedy stare 
intimated the realm of cockamamie and yet, I always sensed a certain 
perspicacity on stilts; a staying power.  Perhaps in their wakeful altitudes another pecking order was cracking out.  Could it be that chickens aligned in a roost, like spiteful bureaucrats, were, according to their heavenly mathematics, becoming seraphim, their third wing gilded but invisible to us?  Adjusting such a wing in eleven dimensions could account for all that scrawl about, and for the glint of their feathers, copper at the right time of day.  When I stare at them I think there is more there than meets the eye.  There is something admirable, after all, in the concentration of the chicken-brained, that little vault of feeding emptiness, where light can scintillate in peace.  Perhaps you have been too preoccupied to notice.  You, who can't even read through a poem without thinking of something else. 

Copyright 2001,  Molly McGee 

Molly McGee works as a medical physicist at the Univeristy of Washington and has published haiku over the years in Modern Haiku, etc. She has also composed libretti for a one-act opera and choral works, performed in the US and Europe.