Upon Examining the Newly Hatched Egg That Flew 108 Times Around The World

Upon Examining the The Newly Hatched Egg That Flew 108 Times Around The World

by Martin Ott

What did we think we would find?
A canister of microfilm genetically

coded to appear inside the chick,
so that when it became fully grown

a spy could find the secret plans
over a sweet and sour Szechwan?

Or maybe the bird would be
confused by why humans talked

and chickens couldn’t, wondering
how it could reclaim its spacecraft

crashed in a child’s plastic swimming
pool and return to the future?

Or else this chicken can actually
fly with feathered grace and send

pregnant women into orbit for a new
race of dizzy, far-flung progeny.

What do we know about science
anyway? Beakers shatter. The metric

system fells empires. People die.
Fowl are tested to insure plumpness.

10-year-old girls get their period
from chicken hormones. Lightning

cannot be safely bottled. Beakers glow.
Somewhere in China, students labor

to free the space chicken. Escape
plans are drawn in code and a route

along the old Spice Trail is scouted
where the ancient snake is most brittle.

Is it true that the Great Wall of China
is the only man-made structure visible

from space with the naked eye?
Or is it a lie? Even a chicken can see

borders below as it spins on a rotisserie,
held by an unseen astronaut’s hand.

The shell is cracking. Through chicken
wire on some distant plain, a hen

watches a parade of cloud people.
Dreams are hatched. A space chicken

franchise is opening in New Orleans.
Will we choose to only devour

chickens that have learned to soar?
Somewhere in a sanitary cubicle

on the other side of the globe,
a scientist sweats in rubber gloves

and feels a tiny heartbeat vibrating,
soundless from the other side

of the barrier. In that time he will
have revolved once around the earth

and the chick will whisper its secrets.
We wait, breathless, for the first peep.

-refers from the phrase “someone lays an egg” in J.P. Dancing Bear’s poem  Spellbound.

  1. I like this.

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