Mid-summer means broody hens here at Busy Solitude Farm. Eartha and the gold hen are excellent nest setters. They've been stuck for weeks, though they occasionally move over one box, so nothing has been hatchable yet.
This morning I entered the hen pen just as both broodies were taking a break, letting other hens lay in the boxes.
In fact, all three boxes were occupied. If you think about it, that makes major complications for me! Each evening I come out with my Sharpie and mark the eggs that are allowed to stay, whisking away any new eggs I'd like to eat. If a broody hen had her way, she'd set sixteen or twenty eggs. But even these big "heavy breed" hens can't cover that many effectively. So I allow about six eggs and take the rest.
It's quite warm today, nearly 90 before lunchtime. All the hens are panting while inside, then racing outside where they can find some shade. And everyone is a little edgy. Poor Spot has dashed right and left trying to escape the wrath of a cranky hen. Finally he found a quiet place.
Sitting quietly on the roost, he is away from the nest boxes, can watch the comings and going of the coop door, and just take a break for a while.
Which I am going to do now, too. Hormonal hens wear me out!
I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself than be crowded on a velvet cushion. -- Thoreau
There are days when solitude is a heady wine that intoxicates you with freedom, others when it is a bitter tonic, and still others when it is a poison that makes you beat your head against the wall. -- Colette
I hold this to be the highest task for a bond between two people: that each protects the solitude of the other. -- Rilke
As innocent as a new-laid egg. -- W. S. Gilbert
Raising children is like being pecked to death by chickens. --Anonymous, but my mother gave it to me!
Language...has created the word "loneliness" to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word "solitude" to express the glory of being alone. --Paul Johannes Tillich
Life begins when you plant a garden. -- Chinese proverb
The great omission in American life is solitude...that zone of time and space, free from the outside pressures, which is the incubator of the spirit. --Marya Mannes
If you were born lucky, even your rooster will lay eggs. -- Russian proverb
When the superficial wearies me, it wearies me so much that I need an abyss in order to rest. --Antonio Porchia
Cocks may crow, but it's the hen that lays the eggs. -- Attr. Margaret Thatcher
I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude. -- Henry David Thoreau