Photo by Ivan B. Carmo

Photo by Ivan B. Carmo

It has been terrifically cold here in Wisconsin the last couple days.  The depth of winter always makes me a little blue and listless and I recall some sad winters in the past.  One such winter I wrote this poem and I sometimes remember it because it taught me there is always some warmth and hope not very far away.


In two different worlds, we are back to back.

I stare out the kitchen window

at the wide, glaring desert of white

that falls down the moraine west of the house.

I can’t remember anything but winter:

this foreign landscape

these bitter hands

all the unforeseen obstacles

hanging from wiry trees

all the uncaptured opportunities

long since flown south.

But behind me, you are smiling

under the 60 watt bulb

a child in your lap

reading a book about bees.

In pictures,

the cells are brimming with sweetness

the queen lays eggs by the thousands

the worker bees dance


drenched in pollen.

2 responses to “Bees

  1. A friend of mine called me to tell me they had ordered a case of wine from the wine club the joined. The case was delivered the other day–half frozen. We laughed about how cold it had to be to enable wine to freeze in a shipping container. I forwarded “Bees” to them and they called to say thanks. So I am am forwarding their thanks to you and the “Bees”.

    Gary Gilbert

  2. I will thank the bees on your behalf. I wonder if they will survive this cold spell.

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