I could see the top of the knee high grass moving
like in the movie Jurassic Park when the velociraptors
went hunting as my quails were on the run.
I could hear them trilling below the swaying swamp grass as
they dashed to freedom along the fence line and into the brambles.
I felt sad and proud like I felt on Troy's first day of
kindergarten as he climbed up those huge
steps of the school bus that would take him away
towards future independence.
The song, "Band on the Run" began playing in
my head and I felt cheered up thinking of
how much fun it must be for my covey
exploring the wilds of the yard.
Only Helen Keller remained in the coop
pigging out on the fresh feed in the dispenser.
I sat in my lawn chair enjoying the warm sun
and after a few hours I saw them bobbing around
back to their coop. Fred came under the fence first,
followed a little later by Ginger and Ella.
Gail didn't show up for another five minutes.
She's a full-blood bobwhite and pretty wild.
I tossed a raspberry to Fred and it rolled
under the buttercups. He lunged underneath
the weeds and came up chomping the juicy fruit
then turned and shared it with the girls.
They bobbed around the yard for a half hour
cooing and trilling before hopping back up
in their coop. After much burrowing in their
fresh pine shavings they all fell asleep in
the sun. I closed and latched the coop door.
Content knowing my little flock was safe.