Rachel (Humorous Children's Story in Rhyme)

by John Buckley

Rachel! shouted mum, come over here,

Ill show you once to make it clear.

Watch now: Scratch the ground.


Peck the ground.


Make your sound cluck cluck.

Keep looking down, not up.


But Rachels eyes werent on the floor.

She hardly ate, she didnt look for more

Is that it? she asked. Is that all we do?

Just pecking and clucking?

Mum said, And scratching, too.


Oh Yippee, said Rachel, but she didnt mean it.

Mum, you havent looked. You just havent seen it.

Theres more to life than pecking the ground

And scratching and clucking, if

You are looking up, instead of down.


For the last time Rachel, Ill not tell you again,

Youre being nothing but a silly young hen

We do what we do, take one last look look,

Its scratch scratch, peck peck, cluck cluck.



But Rachel was watching birds passing by,

Or dipping low and soaring high.

She said: Im going to do what we dont.

Scratching and pecking quite simply I wont.

Because I am going to fly.


I will. I shall. I can. I know,

Ill stand on the fence and jump and go

Climb through the air to a fantastic height

No-one can stop my first ever flight

Like a magpie, a robin, a blackbird, a crow


Whats up, Rachel? demanded dad, shouting.

Looking tough with his puffed out wings

Your mum says youre pushing youre luck.

You scratch, scratch, peck peck, cluck cluck

But youre doing none of these things.



Sorry dad, said Rachel. Do you want to know why?

Im watching the birds up in he sky.

They flutter and dive and swoop

And soar and tumble and loop-the-loop,

While all I do in this coop

Is scratch scratch, peck peck, cluck cluck

And dad I want to fly!


Oh Rachel you twit, said dad and laughed.

You cant fly, dont be so daft.

Your wings are stubby, but its not only that.

As you grow youll just get fat.

Flap your wings for all youre worth,

Youll still come crashing back to earth.

Scratch and peck, said dad, is all you do

So get on with it Rachel, Ill be watching you.

And he strutted away shaking his head

Tut-tutting, not cluck-clucking

At the things shed said.


But Rachel knew her dad was wrong,

Shed be flying before too long.

So she told her friends what she planned to do,

But they chuckled and cluckled

     And laughed at her too.

Shouting, Nitwit! Ninny! Birdbrain! Clown!

What are you doing

Looking up and not down?

The foods at your feet, down there in the muck

Scratch, scratch, peck peck, cluck CLUCK.


But Rachel said, Ill take no notice, not of you.

And I promise Ill show the lot of you!

She wandered off on her own

Behind the coop all alone

To do what she had to do



All day she fluttered, flapped and flopped to the floor,

Picked herself up and did it some more.

Over and over, again and again,

Into the night and the pouring rain.

And in her dreams she was in the sky,

The first chicken ever that could fly.

Racing with pigeons who couldnt believe it,

Going so fast no swallow could achieve it;

Going higher and higher than an eagle,

Floating on the wind just like a seagull.

Flitting in and out of the bushes,

With blackbirds, sparrows and thrushes;

To the top of the trees with the crows and rooks.

No more scratch scratch, peck peck cluck cluck.

And strutting around when she should be flying,

Shed make it happen or shed die trying.



The other young hens just laughed at her,

Then got on with the job of getting fat and fatter,

Until they forgot about someone so absurd

She thought she was no ordinary bird

Doing what they dont. It did not matter.


And Rachel practiced

And practiced

And then

Nothing happened.

And then

Nothing happened again

And then,


From behind the coop came an incredible sight,

Something feathery reached a fantastic height.

Something never before ever seen,

Something that could never ever have been.

Rising from the ground like an aeroplane,

Into the clouds and out again,

Under the trees and round the barn,

Over the fields and across the farm;

Gliding over the hens and with a giggle

She gave her wing tip a bit of a jiggle.

Shouting at the them, Look at me, look at me!

And at last they lifted their heads to see,

And they were shocked, completely dumfounded,

Flabbergasted, gobsmacked and astounded.

And they knew all along shed been right:

She had become the first chicken in flight.

Wow, they said.

How? they said.

Then all at once they started to cheer,


And she pretended she couldnt hear.

So the noise grew into a roar,


And they clapped till their wings were sore,

Stamped their feet and shouted for more

And Rachel loved it


So once again she left the ground,

Flapped her wings and flew a round.

Theyd all said it couldnt be done,

But Rachel had been the only one,

Whod looked up instead of down.


Lets face it, no ifs or buts

Our Rachel had shown some guts.

Because you cant reach the sky

Unless you aim high

And forget the scratch, scratch, peck peck, cluck clucks

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