Calliope is still missing. Antigone, Hyperbole and Apostrophe are looking confused. They can tell something's amiss but can't wrap their little feathered heads around what's different. They skipped gaily into the coop last night, so I don't think they witnessed it when the Straight Talk Express pulled up and recruited my chicken. It's either that or the religious order down the street. They've been known to be quite persuasive and have a reputation for breaking up families.
Chris went out this morning to look for her. I asked if he wanted to take a piece of bread with him and he said no, he'd be fine. You know, in case he was lost in a snow storm or something at the end of our driveway. And then later in the morning when I went quietly down to the basement in the off chance that Calliope had gotten stuck there, I heard Lucy say "why is mommy going to the basement?" and Chris said "I don't know. Oh. Oh no. That would not be good" and he raced down after me to see if there was a chicken having a party in our boxes of summer clothes. The bulkhead had been open while musicians came and went, so it wasn't all just self-deceived wishful thinking. Okay, maybe it was.
I think it's official: Calliope is not coming back. Which means it's time for a eulogy.
Calliope, or whatever her name is today, was a good chicken. She ate bugs and laid lovely light turquoise eggs. She came when she was called, especially if you were holding food. She was demure and frank and had a reputation for truthfulness in adversity. She never missed a meal. We will miss our Calliope, and know that the world was a better place while she was here.
Behold, her baby picture.
Even then she was the grand dame of the flock. A cornerstone of society and a pillar of inspiration to those who would follow. Rest in peace, brown chicken.