nthposition online magazine

Bees in a pool

by Stevan Alcock

[ poetry - november 12 ]

On the open ground,
beyond the wall that
skirts the hotel pool,
where we lie
beneath the liquid sun,
a buzz saw cuts the air.

And as if that weren’t enough,
the mop-like head of a solitary tree,
lolling above this poolside wall,
starts to shake, then totter, then falls from view
with a soft and deathly crash.

We sigh. And return to our long drinks and books.
And as if that weren’t enough,
ants are scurrying across my paper;
in Syria it looks like civil war.

We can smell smoke.
We can hear the crackling of dry wood,
like gun shots.
Someone cries out. I look up

into the searing sky.
A swarm is rising - black dots - growing fat
in the eye.
An angry hum hangs in the air,
racing towards where we lie.

The bees fall into the pool,
like raindrops from a breaking storm,
then,
their wet abdomens weighing them down,
they quiver on the cooling surface,
as one by one, they sink and drown.