Patches of Purple

— Pushpa MacFarlane

In a bed under the shadow of the eaves
crawls a patch of purple flowers around scraps
of woodchips with colored trims—shavings
left by some slacker, too lazy to sharpen
crayon pencils
                             in the wastebasket where they
belong. Purple petals with yellow centers
peer out of a carpet of green undergrowth
leaning towards the afternoon sun that warms
the shrubbery
                            just outside the shadow
of the eaves. My gaze follows a small circle
of foliage wavering around the purple mass
and I spot the culprit—a bee buzzing in and out
of the growth,
                              but not in isolation. Instead,
there are honey-fed swarms in every cluster.
Squinting, through the window pane, I see
bees idling through wanton flowers like
bored viewers
                               at a craft fair, where after
a while, all the stalls seem the same. They lose
the sense of urgency to see the rest of the wares,
but still go into one stall and out the other,
not waiting long
                                enough to absorb it all, because they
will not be back again. And here’s the difference—
this fare will not be over. The bees will be back
the next day, and the purple patch will still be
here, waiting in the shadow of the eaves.

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