Over Shots of Tequila You Ask What My Bee Poem Means and Why I Always Push You Off the Cliff in Your Dreams
Lisa Caloro

In warm October, the bees still crawl through lavender,
hover over goldenrod, staging a fall
masquerade, signaling the sober girl
who mourns the crushed universe,
the pollen of my tears feeding a new loss
on repeat—the green baked to brown,
milky sunlight transformed to honey,
the work of creatures searching the thistle
and clover for one last sip.

If I drink enough, I can explain the breakdown
of our evolution, how I was not meant to cry
into a morning cup, roll the stones
of my discontent all day to earn enough
to carry the heavy weight of breath.
If I put down this shot glass,
drag you to the mountain’s edge where
sky gives way to meadows still raving with color,
you will hear the electric hum of this world, the rot
and light of bold magic, the sting of knowing
and how we lost it. Do we have to fall
to remember how to live? Or can we

reach for roots, burrow into the bones
of soil to sleep dreamless, drunk
on the bees droning deep into their night.
We could remember who we are, the foggy-eyed,
violet winter would not seem so foreign
as the winged ancestors of birth
and death cycle us through another season,
hold us steady with their song.