Mowdown

Door at Kam Tin Tin Hau Temple 2016_RESIZED

Ալ հոգնա՜ծ եմ
ըսպասելեն տենչանքներուս մեղրին անույշ
— Միսաք Մեծարենց

I imagined you uncomfortably centre of a swarm
when you said you’d run them over with the mower,
the bees. We marched to our surprise
back to the place, hearing the high-voltage hum
of an unidentified engine, singing of the sting
rather than of coarse honey’s vaguer promise.
Clustered at the mouth of a depression,
they made a house of themselves on shorn grass,
court of a runaway queen restless for fresh pollen
or victims of virus-longing.
Sentries levitated against our curious air-space,
buzzing sun-glassed heads as a check to distance.
My exposed ankles felt for the insects,
with the sun in the west and frogs exhaling damp at dusk
to the threat of frosts. What could they do
deprived of the six angles of the hexagon
bees need to impose minimum shelter on their world?
To know that we would have to return
when fields of frozen-grinning daisies next came back to light.
And we did. They were gone.

Photograph: 香港錦田天后廟 Tin Hau Temple in Kam Tin, Hong Kong (2016)

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