This is the start of the Labor Day weekend. Humans work, but not nearly as hard as the little bees who are responsible for pollinating the plants that provide us with our food. So, for this Labor Day, I'd like to celebrate the little workers by sharing this poem by John Ciardi called "Bees and Morning Glories."
Morning glories, pale as a mist drying,Don't you just love the idea of bees as pirates? I don't think I'll ever look at them the same way again!
fade from the heat of the day, but already
hunchback bees in pirate pants and with peg-leg
hooks have found and are boarding them.
This could do for the sack of the imaginary
fleet. The raiders loot the galleons even as they
one by one vanish and leave still real
only what has been snatched out of the spell.
I’ve never seen bees more purposeful except
when the hive is threatened. They know
the good of it must be grabbed and hauled
before the whole feast wisps off.
They swarm in light and, fast, dive in,
then drone out, slow, their pantaloons heavy
with gold and sunlight. The line of them,
like thin smoke, wafts over the hedge.
And back again to find the fleet gone.
Well, they got this day’s good of it. Off
they cruise to what stays open longer.
Nothing green gives honey. And by now
you’d have to look twice to see more than green
where all those white sails trembled
when the world was misty and open
and the prize was there to be taken.
From The Collected Poems of John Ciardi [811.52 CIA].
Have a great weekend, but before you go, stop by A Teaching Life for the Poetry Friday Round-Up. See you on Tuesday!
Photo by TangoPango.