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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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