Carnage #writeinspiration

Coming home from school at tea-time was an adventure.  You never knew, you could find anything from rabbit stew to sheep’s heads, swimming in greasy juices for the dogs, or a game pie, stacked with mushrooms and pastry. Perhaps an omelette made with eggs from the pigeons. Then mother served up Fred…

***

Written for Sacha Black’s writeinspiration challenge this week, a tale in 52 words… and the tale is a true one.

The stock auctions drew my parents like moths to a flame. One day I came home to a garden full of rabbits. Most of them went in the pot.  Sheep’s heads, chicken necks and lights (lungs) were acquired from the village butcher for next to nothing to feed the dogs and gruesome indeed were the scenes after the local poacher had been to call. On another occasion they brought home pigeons and we suddenly had a pigeon loft in the garden. As a teenager, I stopped asking what was for dinner when it became more like a ‘who’.

Fred was the cock of the loft, a father of many generations of racing pigeon and a personal friend. She served him with mushrooms in a pie. I have never eaten pigeon again.

I remember…vividly… coming home from school one day to a charnel house.  My mother, bloodied to the elbows, was wrestling her way into another carcass with a pile of innards and dressed corpses building steadily beside her. My baby brother was cradling a chicken’s head and pulling the tendons to make its beak work and, when I lifted the lid of the pan on the stove, two half-cooked sheep’s heads looked back at me with milky eyes.

I was vegetarian for a long time after that episode.

Fred, however, remained in my memory…

Fred

3He strutted up and down the loft
While puffing out his chest
Where iridescent feathers
Caught a rainbow on his breast.
The hens were all aflutter
‘Cause they knew that Fred was King,
The undisputed champion
Who wore the racer’s ring.
His picture hung upon the wall
His trophies on display,
And when the flock flew overseas
‘Twas Fred would lead the way.
Blue-banded hunk, whose beady eye
Kept younger cocks in check,
Until the day he grew too old
And mother wrung his neck.
His coffin was a golden one,
A crispy pastry cave,
Bedecked with tender mushrooms
More gravy, then, than grave.

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at scvincent.com and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email: findme@scvincent.com.
This entry was posted in Humour, Poetry, writing prompt and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to Carnage #writeinspiration

  1. noelleg44 says:

    However did you survive? My Mom used to wring chicken necks but the rest of this tale is offal!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. InfiniteZip says:

    I think I’ve just become a vegetarian after reading this one 🙂 ick! but very good tale none the less ❤

    Like

    • Sue Vincent says:

      And a true tale, I’m afraid 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • InfiniteZip says:

        I know, creepy….but in other countries what they eat as a staple to us over here is like “what?” no way. Like horse meat, I love horses….I don’t think I’ve ever partaken and I honestly hope not, but these days, who knows what they put in the sausages and hot dogs, right?

        Like

        • Sue Vincent says:

          I lived in France for some years…strange things were on the menu. I had gone over with the mindset of eat first, question later. As long as it was dead. If I had enjoyed whatever it turned out to be, any bjections I could have were only my own squeamishness. My employers delighted in … challenging me…
          My boss cooked me lunch one day and I was obliged to comment that it was the best steak I’d ever eaten. “That was horse,” she replied.

          Liked by 1 person

          • InfiniteZip says:

            my sister moved to germany while I was in high school and she had her translation book, the family she was staying with tried to make “american pizza” for her, with sausage….turns out by the time she was almost through and looked it up, it was donkey sausage….she didn’t live there long. Rabbits hanging in the window of the butcher shop, etc….I pass a house in the am on my walk and see a bunny on the driveway in a cage and a middle eastern man who comes out to sit and smoke, I wondered at first seeing the grill close by if it was intended dinner, months later, bunny still there. Must be a pet, makes me smile to know that 🙂

            Like

            • Sue Vincent says:

              The markets of my home town were always full of game, so that was something I was used to. I think it is actually a good thing to really know where your food is coming from. It does teach a respect for food and a definite desire not to see life wasted.

              Liked by 1 person

  3. willowdot21 says:

    Please tell me you are teasing…. if not your Mum must of been an inventive woman!!<3

    Like

  4. Oh dear, I think I am a very fussy eater. I don’t eat sea creatures or piggies and baby sheep and cows make me feel quite odd…

    Like

  5. My mom chased a chicken around the wood chopping block till the feathered dinner tired and laid down her head. Chop and soon in the pot. 😀 😛

    Like

  6. I always thought of myself as a real carnivore but even for me there are limits!! I could not eat anything that was once a pet, nor could I eat something’s head!

    Like

  7. Sacha Black says:

    First, woah. I’ve been veggie since I was two. I lived on a farm with farmer boys who liked to eat what they shot and all it did was serve to affirm my vegetarianism. I still remember the stench when they accidentally pierced a rabbits guts.

    Second – SO frustrated at missing all these pingbacks. I feel completely helpless. Sorry to have missed it, will put yours with this week.

    Like

    • Sue Vincent says:

      No worries…WP is a pain with pingbacks.

      I agree, scenes like this are enough to turn anyone vegetarian, but I promise it is all true. Possibly not a bad thing either in as far as it does give you a real picture and knowledge of where your food is coming from. Especially when you know it personally. Dietary decisions then carry a sense of responsibility that I think the younsters coming up today may be lacking, when food just ‘comes from supermarkets’.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.