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Ode to bees

 
Dennis Carlson
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Ode to Bees







I heard this poem at the Unitarian Universalist service in Hood River, OR yesterday. Just had to share it.


Ode to Bees

Pablo Neruda

Multitude of bees!
in and out of the
crimson, the blue,
the yellow,
of the softest
softness in the world;
you tumble
headlong
into a corolla
to conduct your business,
and emerge
wearing a golden suit
and quantities of
yellow boots.

The waist,
perfect,
the abdomen striped
with dark bars,
the tiny,
ever-busy
head,
the
wings,
newly made of water;
you enter
every sweet-scented window,
open
silken doors,
penetrate the bridal chamber
of the most fragrant
love,
discover
a
drop
of diamond
dew,
and from every house
you visit
you remove
honey,
mysterious,
rich and heavy
honey, thick aroma,
liquid, guttering light,
until you return
to your
communal
palace
and on its gothic parapets
deposit
the product
of flower and flight,
the seraphic and secret nuptial sun!
Multitude of bees!
Sacred
elevation
of unity,
seething
schoolhouse.

Buzzing,
noisy
workers
process
the nectar,
swiftly
exchanging
drops
of ambrosia;
it is summer
siesta in the green
solitudes
of Osorno. High above,
the sun casts its spears
into the snow,
volcanoes glisten,
land
stretches
endless
as the sea,
space is blue,
but
something
trembles, it is
the fiery,
heart
of summer,
the honeyed heart
multiplied,
the buzzing
bee,
the crackling
honeycomb
of flight and gold!

Bees,
purest laborers,
ogival
workers
fine, flashing
proletariat,
perfect,
daring militia
that in combat attack
with suicidal sting;
buzz,
buzz above
the earth's endowments,
family of gold,
multitude of the wind,
shake the fire
from the flowers,
thirst from the stamens,
the sharp,
aromatic
thread
that stitches together the days,
and propagate
honey,
passing over
humid continents, the most
distant islands of the
western sky.

Yes:
let the wax erect
green statues,
let honey
spill in
infinite
tongues,
let the ocean be
a
beehive,
the earth
tower and tunic
of flowers,
and the world
a waterfall,
a comet's tail, a
never-ending
wealth
of honeycombs!
 
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