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Statuary Analysis

Author: poem of Nick Flynn Type: poem Views: 11

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Bees may be trusted, always,
        to discover the best, nay, the only

human, solution. Let me cite

                an instance; an event, that,

though occurring in nature, is still
        in itself wholly abnormal. I refer

to the manner in which the bees

        will dispose of a mouse
                                        or a slug

        that may happen to have found its way
into the hive.

                        The intruder killed,

        they have to deal with
                                        the body,

        which will very soon poison

their dwelling. If it be impossible

        for them to expel or dismember it,
they will proceed methodically

                & hermetically

        to enclose it in a veritable sepulcher
of propolis & wax,

                which will tower fantastically

above the ordinary monuments
        of the city.


                        When we die
        our bodies powder, our bodies

        the vessel & the vessel

                Our dying does not fill
the hive with the stench

        of dying. But outside
                                the world hungers.

                A cockroach, stung,
can be dragged back out.

                A careless child

        forced a snail inside with a stick once.
        We waxed over the orifice of its shell

                sealing the creature in. And here,

the bottom of the comb,
                                        a mouse,
        driven in by winter & lack.

        Its pawing woke us. We stung it


        Even before it died it reeked - worse
the moment it ceased

                                        Now everyday
        we crawl over it
                            to pass outside,

the wax form of what was

                staring out, its airless sleep,

                        the mouse we built
        to warn the rest from us.


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