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Myrmecology Report; Tell Me Bee by Sally Zakariya



Myrmecology Report


Scientists have calculated how many ants

are on Earth.—Washington Post, 9/19/22


Not just a billion. Not even a trillion.

But twenty thousand trillion here on Earth.

Two and a half million for each one of us.

So very, very many ants.


Industrious, tiny-waisted, the little fellows

are busy aerating the soil so plants can grow,

then serving themselves up as food

for bigger guys.


But twenty thousand trillion!

An impossibly inconceivable number.

Are there even that many grains of sand

in the world? That many stars

in the universe?


Somewhere in heaven famed bug scientist

E.O. Wilson is smiling.



Tell Me, Bee


Experiments indicate that bees have surprisingly

rich inner worlds—Washington Post, 7/31/22


Good night, say the bees, embracing

each other in a flower, clasping

each other’s feet.


They have worked hard today—

we know that about bees, know

they’re always busy.


But what a surprise that such tiny brains

are capable of thought and memory

and recognition.


Creativity too, I’d guess.


Their honeycomb an art.


Their buzzing a symphony.


Tell me what you’re thinking, bee.


Tell me the secrets you whisper as you fly,

your dreams of sweet nectar fit for a queen.


Tell me what it’s like to work together

for the hive, what it’s like to be

a being like you.


Tell me, bee.

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