Yesterday, Perrie laid the first blue-green egg of the season. In fact, everyone except Snowball are now laying eggs. They’re not producing everyday, but creating them nonetheless. So, what season is it? By the calendar, it’s officially winter, and a look outside my window at ice on the little pond, confirms that. But, to the chickens, it is the beginning of egg laying season. Sunlight is all to them, and the days are lengthening.
Which gets me thinking about the word laying. Hens lay eggs. However, a laying hen is not necessarily at the moment pushing out an egg, but one that is of the age to do it. Then again, a laying hen might very well be laying an egg. At this moment, anyone of my hens (except that slacker, Snowball) might be laying. After the fact, that egg is said to have been laid. You can have a sunbathing laying hen lying in the dirt. But you’ll never have a hen lying about the truth- they lack the guile to behave in such a way. Luckily, chicks don’t need layettes, but they do need a place to lie about, although they don’t lay. Only the grown hens get to lay.
I think that I shall have to write a story about a hen using all of the versions of lay, lie, etc. Anyone else want to try?