Tonight I picked up a second chicken and put her in prison.  Evidence revealed the first chicken, the loner, to be innocent.  I now feel a little sorry for her and will try and give her the choice treats of our leftovers.  Is it possible for me to be sentimental when I still intend to dispatch the egg eater?

After my duties as a poultry prison warder I walked around the cottage and down the lane to close the gates.  On grim nights of driving rain it is a job done swiftly.  Tonight it was at a slow and meandering pace.  Tonight the quarter moon hung with its winter friends Orion, Taurus and Pisces. Long stings of clouds obscured them just a little, but not enough to prevent catching, a glimpse of, a falling star.

As I walked around, I caught myself slipping into the habit of our cats.  I walked slowly through the paths of least light.  Paths that sneaked under and beyond the sensors of our security lights.  It’s instinctual, the desire not to spoil the stars at night.

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