The grasses are so tall, willowy like graceful dancers waiting for the music to begin. The wind is blowing sending the grasses dancing overhead, bending over me blocking the sun. I feel trapped by their weight, the stickiness of the individual blades of grass. Swaying the grasses part and I see the open skies. The grasses twist closing over me again and I can’t breathe. I am all turned around. I don’t remember which way to home, to Barn Town. The wind didn’t seem so bad when I ran away from my mama to play. I ignored her calling me. It was to be my adventure. The wind started to laugh at me as it came up softly at first and then in gusty blows. The limp grasses swallowed the wind swelling and lifting their heads to their full height. Tossing me around, in a blink of time, a moment come and gone, I was lost.
I call to my mama for help but she doesn’t answer me. I try and jump as high as I can but I see nothing. I should have stayed by Mama. I am not a full grown chick. I am only 21 days old. I am still a fluffy ball of down. My feathers are just starting to poke through the fuzz. What was I thinking? My little heart is pounding so hard that my hearing is blocked. It feels like it will come right out of my chest. I call again and again but there is no answer. Why didn’t I listen? Why oh why didn’t I stay next to my mamma? I am shaking so hard that it is difficult to stay standing up. I mustn’t fall down. I’ll be lost forever if I do. I must calm down. I draw a deep breath and try to remember what Mama said to do if this should happen.
Slowly I remember, Mama said, “Be quiet and listen. Identify what you hear. When you hear what you know, turn toward the sound and walk carefully towards it.” So, I swallow and try to wet my beak. It is hard to listen for what you know when you are shaking so hard but I determine to try. As the grasses part over me again, I see the big hawk flying up in the sky. I start to shake harder and cry out again for Mama. Thankfully the hawk has flown on and doesn’t hear my pitiful cry for help. When the grasses part again, I gulp air and hear a sound I recognize. I hear the big geese talking in the distance. I close my eyes tight as I try to determine where they are as the grasses cover me again.
Slowly I push the tumble of grasses out of my way as I stumble toward the sounds of home. It seems such a long way away on my little legs. I am so very hot and thirsty. I am tired. I want my mama. I want to go to sleep. The grasses wave over me, opening and closing. The sun is so hot. It is hard to breath. When I get home I am never leaving my mama’s side again.
As I struggled through the small dents in the ground which are like valleys to me I look up through the grasses and I see the big hawk circling overhead. He is looking right at me. I beginning to shake and as I call for my mama the hawk dives toward me.
excerpt from Further Adventures in Barn Town – book 3