Wednesday, May 11, 2011

yours not mine

She stood with her knees slightly flexed, one foot forward, head down, her hands at belt level, held slightly out from her body. Arrested motion. I saw them right away, lustrous black bees,enormous, maybe a dozen, bobbing in the air around her. At twenty yards I heard the buzzing.
    I told her not to worry, they wouldn't sting. I moved in slowly, as much to reassure her as to keep the bees from getting riled. Burnished, black-enameled. They rose to eye level, dropped away, humming in the sun. I put my arm around her. I told her it was all right to move. I told her we move slowly up toward the path. I felt her tense up even more. Her way of saying no, of course. She was afraid even to speak. I told her it was safe, they wouldn't sting.  They hadn't stung me and id walked right through them. All we had to do was move slowly up the slope. They were beautiful i said. I'd never seen bees this size or color. They gleamed, i told her. They were grand, fantastic.

  As I held her close she gave me a look that spoke some final disappointment. As if i could convince her, stung twice before. As if i could take her out of her fear, a thing so large and deep as fear, by going on about the beauty of these things. As if i could tell her anything at all, fake lover, liar.
     We held that inept stance a moment longer. Then i took her arm and led her through the field.

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