The Last Honeybee

I wrote this poem over ten years for a poetry-writing workshop. The poem displays the pantoum form: the second and forth lines of a stanza become the first and third lines, respectively, of the next stanza, and there is an alternating end rhyme scheme. Per the subject: I must have recently read an article about honeybees disappearing/dying.

 

The Last Honeybee

 

We smothered our Queen one month ago:

Not in rebellion—she had become listless.

We surrounded her, vibrated, and let our energy flow—

She fell to the ground, overheated and lifeless.

 

Not in rebellion—she had become listless.

She had refused to lay another egg or lead the swarm.

She fell to the ground, overheated and lifeless.

What larvae remain will soon come to harm.

 

She had refused to lay another egg or lead the swarm.

The drones have started to disappear.

What larvae remain will soon come to harm.

The workers are succumbing to a vague fear.

 

The drones have started to disappear,

And the larvae now suffer starvation.

The workers are succumbing to a vague fear

As our swarm encounters deprivation.

 

The larvae now suffer starvation.

On my own, I cannot feed the larvae.

Our swarm encounters deprivation,

And I can only watch the hatchlings die.

 

On my own, I cannot feed the larvae.

The honeycombs have become tombs:

I can only watch the hatchlings die.

In the collapsing colony, desolation looms.

 

The honeycombs have become tombs.

Alone, I forage for pollen and a sign.

In the collapsing colony, desolation looms.

Abandoned, as if by a hideous design.

 

Alone, I forage for pollen and a sign.

In case others are watching, I dance.

Abandoned, as if by a hideous design,

I drift among the stamens in a trance.

 

In case others are watching, I dance.

I pursue one last lingering bloom.

I drift among the stamens in a trance

And wait for an inverted spring to resume.

 

As I pursue one last lingering bloom.

I remember we smothered our Queen one month ago.

In waiting for an inverted spring to resume,

We surrounded her, vibrated, and let our energy flow.

About Bourbon Apocalypse: A Whiskey Son of Sorrow

"If you can't annoy somebody, there's little point in writing." ~ Kingsley Amis
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