The Water Carriers

The Water Carriers
by Angelo Giambra
On hot days we would see them
leaving the hive in swarms. June and I
would watch them weave their way
through the sugarberry trees toward the pond
where they would stop to take a drink,
then buzz their way back, plump and full of water,
to drop it on the backs of the fanning bees.
If you listened you could hear them, their tiny wings
beating in unison as they cooled down the hive.
My brother caught one once, its bulbous body
bursting with water, beating itself against
the smooth glass wall of the canning jar.
He lit a match, dropped it in, but nothing
happened. The match went out and the bee
swam through the mix of sulfur and smoke
until my brother let it out. It flew straight
back to the hive. Later, we skinny-dipped
in the pond, the three of us, the August sun
melting the world around us as if it were
wax. In the cool of the evening, we walked
home, pond water still dripping from our skin,
glistening and twinkling like starlight.

0 thoughts on “The Water Carriers

  1. Here in the jar I run no risk of spilling my guts. What with the swirling fumes, my stars twinkle better. Quite the show.
    I enjoyed this poem. It made me feel melancholy for a time I didn’t actually live through. Context has never allowed me to skinny dip. I wish I had gotten out more often growing up. Now I’d be arrested and labeled as a sex criminal for public nudity.
    Fear brand canning jars. The company should open a university and give back to the community. I’d get myself a Masters finally.

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