She works tirelessly through the afternoon.
Forces down the sweet nectar of
fresh blossom, honey stomach full and thick.
She burrows her head in the hive,
suffocated by the freckled cells,
sharp and flaky to the touch.
Regurgitates the sticky sugar.
Stomach searing, tongue melting.
In the garden light burns
against the beehive. Honeycomb flares
glistening against the thick
and syrupy yellow.
Her wings ache against hard, pressing wind,
she returns again to the blossoms.
Unlike others, hundreds,
collecting on the hive like fire ants,
she is careful with the honey.
She brings it to me, trickles it down
my hoarse throat, raspy cough.
I watch her leave again, to force down the nectar,
My throat grows tender.
Here is the fruit of her labor,
and there I am, tasting the honey, indifferent
to glass-jarred and preserved flavor.