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Land of the Bee


Well, the deed is done.

I’ve “treated” 5 of the 6 ground bee nests on my property. Having so many bees seems to be an unanticipated disadvantage to moving to the country. In the past, I have planted wild flowers to encourage bees and all manner of pollinators. I have loved bees and bemoaned their recent demise due to pesticide use.


Alas, this love affair came to an abrupt end when I discovered that I’ve become deathly allergic to their venom. A very scary trip to the ER had me changing my attitude toward them from one of benevolence to one of fear and trepidation.


My formerly minimal outdoor clothing sporting ways were changed overnight to a distinctly Tela Tubby looking full bee suit. Judging by the UPS guy’s face upon a recent visit, I am sure he thinks I am carrying out medical experiments with Ebola here in my cabin.


So, I know I should be happy that by tomorrow thousands of little black and yellow bodies will be strewn across my lawn. But, I’m not. I feel sad. Like a failure. As though I’m just another human who eradicates nature when she is inconvenient.


Even worse, I can’t help but feel that by not figuring out some more environmentally ethical solution to bee relocation I’ve committed an act of war against these innocent creatures. (The fact is that they only attacked me when I inadvertently disrupted their home.)


All of this me-against-nature activity has me thinking that I’m no better than certain bully nations who mess with other countries and proceed to be incensed when their inhabitants retaliate. I hate war. I want to feel I’m above war, that there are other solutions. I imagine a planet where the present worldwide military budget is spent on diplomacy, negotiation, and bridge building.


Now, I see how naive my self-righteous visions are. How can world peace come about if I can’t even figure out a way to co-exist with my yellow jacket neighbors?…


Instead, tomorrow I will go out and survey the carnage and, like every conquering nation, I will be grateful for my power and my “apparently” safer life…




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© 2020 Susan Duesbery

United States