I Used to Be a Beekeeper


For I knew she was telling the bees of one / Gone on the journey we all must go!

From the poem Telling the Bees by John Greenleaf Whittier

I used to be a beekeeper.

I still look at my world through a beekeeper's eyes. It's late winter and the elm and maple tree buds are plump with the pollen that used to feed newly hatching larvae. Dead nettle and other cool-weather wildflowers that once lured out the first foragers of the year are beginning to bloom. Now their efforts, as mine, have grown useless in the lifecycle of the honeybee.

I had just hit my stride as a beekeeper when the end started. After years of learning and building up my apiaries, I had almost more hives than I could handle. The spring air hummed with the sound of bees coming and going from their hives. It took me all summer and fall to market all of the extra honey the bees produced. The rest of the year was filled with repairing woodenware, cleaning out old frames, and driving to, mowing around, and caring for hives in the apiaries maintained away from my farm.

5/21/2020 11:45:11 PM

I am terribly sorry for your loss and that of the lands next to you. There is nothing more heartbreaking than watching something that you have cared for, nurtured, and cultivated be destroyed by the uncourteous and thoughtless actions of others.

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