Virgil speaks much of bees ("little Romans" he calls them, for their diligence and loyalty) but says
nothing about wasps -- which is a shame because their biography is at least as illustrious, and frankly
more dramatic. I might write a treatise on bees but I would stage a drama about the wasp.
As summer slides into fall, tribes of bees flirt with goldenrod and the dwindling vetch and yarrow, with
the aster's first surge, in the interstitial realms along the river-banks. Buttery-banded bees, some almost
pale as milk, others orange-lacquered, display each hive's livery with abdominal intarsia.
Over the bee-swarms, in looping cobalt caracoles sails the wasp, an emissary from the distant blue,
from across the wide water I think, where fauns and elves might dwell, and Georgics do not apply. The
wasp has detached itself from that blue, from Blue, is a flying piece of Blue, all of the world's blueness
compressed into one agile point, a steel-onyx'd-blue dart-slice of the far Faerie horizon arriving at my
The wasp flies silently above the thrumming of its cousins, as ominously elegant as an assassin, dainty
trailing legs belying the venom within. It hunts spiders, crickets, grasshoppers and katydids, paralyzing
them in underground burrows as hosts for its larvae. No pollen gathered, no honey to be gathered in its
broodery, just slow feasting, a devouring from within and then birth for the next needle-in-blue.
Faerie holds no paradise; recite no Georgics there.
Daniel A. Rabuzzi has had two novels, five short stories and twenty poems published (www.danielarabuzzi.com). He lived eight years in Norway, Germany and France, and earned degrees in the study of folklore and mythology, and European history. He lives in New York City with his artistic partner & spouse, the woodcarver Deborah A. Mills (www.deborahmillswoodcarving.com), and the requisite cat. Tweets @TheChoirBoats