Her Secret

A poem by guest contributor Heather Leughmyer

Her Secret


In a crowded cage she sits
Ammonia chokes the air
Aside from all the feces
The wire floor is bare.


Not a strand of straw for comfort
To build a cozy nest
She lays egg after egg after egg after egg
And never gets to rest.


Her skin exposed and bleeding
Where feathers should have been
She’s a shell of what she use to be
This hopeless little hen.


Never has she stretched her wings
Or scratched her feet in dirt
She’s known this life forever
Deprivation, darkness, hurt.


To them she’s just a “unit”
Her job is to produce
When she no longer can
She’ll no longer be of use.


All she’s ever known
Is her tiny metal hell
Every day enduring
The boredom, pain, the smell.


Her eggs will soon be omelets
Be deviled and be dyed
While smiling cartoon hens
Keep her secret locked inside.


Photo by xandert (Morguefile)