Picture it and Write: Imprinted

by joetwo

Hi there! This is my offering for this week’s Picture it and Write for Ermilia’s blog here. Once again; the picture is not mine it was made by DiggieVitt on flickr, I only use it for inspiration. Anyway, enjoy.


Sam ran through the field, his legs catching on the tall grass between the man-tall cornrows. He could hear flapping behind him. With each step he cursed what he had done.

He found the eggs in nest that had fallen from it’s tree. There were plenty of dogs and cats around so the mother had no chance of behind able to look after them on the ground. In fact the mother seemed to have already abandoned them. Sam had no intention of letting them die, he took them back to the farmyard and the incubator used for chicken eggs.

The flapping behind him grew in strength and were joined by frantic cawing. The noise filled him with dread.

There were eight eggs but only seven hatched. Sam was the first thing each of them saw and from then on their eyes only followed him.

There was a black shadow to his left. Sam looked to see the black bird swoop past him. It turned to circle him.

For the first few weeks they were utterly dependent on Sam. He gave them heat, water and food. In time; their bare bodies sprouted black feathers and in the way of things they made their first forays into the sky above.

The first bird was joined by another and another, and another. Sam stopped running. He knew there would be no escape.

He consulted the experts, read the best authors on the subject, and he did everything he could think of. He trained them as well as he could. But something had gone wrong.

All seven crows were flying around him now. Getting very close, their cries increasingly demanding.

One of the experts said that it was the imprinting, the fixation of the chicks on what they first saw. It was hard wired from when they first opened their eyes and it would be nearly impossible to undo.Β 

With the birds edging closer and closer. Sam finally had enough. “Fine!” He shouted, “You win!” He reached into his pocket and removed a small package, a granola bar. He broke it into small pieces and the waited for the birds to line up.

He had been working at training his brood to feed naturally for over three months now. But it was no good. The little bastards still insisted that Mommy was the one to feed them.