Beekeepers (18)

//Beekeepers (18)

Beekeepers (18)

Then the honeybees arrive,
Three thousand
Lost on a sugar nut branch,
Thin air, thick.

Woven with wings,
A ball bound to itself,
Globular, pendulous,
Swayed by the wind,

A living drip
That won’t drop.

When the beekeeper comes,
Barehanded, bareheaded,
He sweep-scoops them
Into the open top of the hive,

A frame-filled box, where,
They pour themselves
Across golden hexagons,

Honeycomb, home.

But look!
At the entrance,
Four drones emerge,
Abdomens raised, throb-wiggling,

Wafting pheromones
Into the invisible sky,
To where the last of the swarm,
Glazed like honey in the bark,

Too delicate for gathering,
Has been left behind.

Scent. Signal.
Ah, to take good
Care of one another,
To whisper,

“Here. This way,”
When someone is
Silently. Entirely silent!

First one, then another,
The last of the bees wing homeward.

By | 2019-07-17T08:54:23-04:00 May 27th, 2019|Farm|4 Comments

About the Author:

Forrest Pritchard is a full-time sustainable farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding a BA in English and a BS in Geology from William & Mary. Smith Meadows, his farm, was one of the first “grass finished” operations in the country, and has sold at leading farmers’ markets in the Washington DC area for two decades. Pritchard's books have received starred reviews from The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, NPR, and more.


  1. robswennes May 28, 2019 at 11:30 am - Reply

    Forrest —

    Would you be OK with area farmers markets including some of your poems in their seasonal market newsletters out to market customers? I see it as a possible additional way to draw new connections between the farmer on the land and the urban customers who purchase his products. We could certainly include a copyright notice in whichever form you would like if we published one of your poems. For space reasons, we would likely use only the shorter ones.

    Love ’em!


    • Forrest Pritchard May 28, 2019 at 11:53 am

      As Jeff Tweedy says, “just remember: what was yours is everyone’s from now on” (From the song ‘What Light’). Absolutely, enjoy! Feel free to say ‘Copyright Forrest Pritchard; used with permission of author’ in fine print.

  2. Eliot Brenner May 28, 2019 at 12:13 pm - Reply

    Paints a very descriptive picture, partly with the words an partly with imagination. Nicely done.

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