The Honey Bee
All for the good of the Queen,
the motto of solidarity buzzes
around the hive, the male drones
look to mate with her, the female
workers bringing her pollen,
so she will be swollen with royal jelly.
All for the life of the Queen,
“a span of 2 to 3 years and up to 5”
until she flies off to start
a new colony and a new queen
born from wax cells, kills off
the remaining competition.
Long live the new Queen, the switch
of Marys and Elizabeths, revive
these tiny settlers and breath new
life into their work, but now
the wind has changed, the matriarchy
has been beheaded.
Workers poisoned, confused,
intoxicated, they eat the lotus
and forget how to get home, or infect
the rest with these false poppies.
This apicide will lead to our downfall,
like Nero’s fiddle, we play our own elegy.
China has killed their queens.
And now human drones with minute
paint brushes and back breaking work
pollinate their flowers by hand, one
by one, their thousand-year-old ginkgo
in the hands of an unskilled killer.
Like overturned trucks on the Delaware,
that kill hundreds, in one quick
bend. Dashed communication
to survive. Years of labor
lie in pieces on the asphalt,
abandoned in the chaos.
All of this to save the Queen.
Poisoned and broken, her workers
die around her
all that is left is Roanoke,
CROATOAN, a pattern
broken for good.
And if we let the Queen die, perhaps
it is best that we die with her.
was born outside of Philadelphia to musician parents who ran an eleven-piece soul band. An English and Theater major at Skidmore College, Kelsey had a play produced at the Walnut Street Theater in 2011. Since 2015, Kelsey has lived in Los Angeles and works in film and television.