Photo by Marcel Herms
Legends of the Bee
Honey, elixir of dreams.
From Appalachia to Ancient Egypt
symbolic bee of royalty, health,
wealth and purity, good luck charm,
messenger between heaven and earth
for bees are wise. The oldest tribe
on earth, the San people of Africa,
tell the tale of a bee carrying
a praying mantis across the widest
river, exhausted the bee lay
the mantis on a floating flower
planting a seed in its body before
it died. The first human. Humans
and bees entwined for eternity.
In my pocket, I carry three ceramic
bees in a blue pouch.
clings to a bluebell
-Christina Chin (A haiga in the inaugural issue of Bleached Butterfly Magazine)
A Butterfly lands on a path,
by happy chance observed.
Foot’s raised and boot’s about to strike
when smallest prayer is heard.
Absurd demise averted.
Sweet insect rises up.
Foot’s much relieved – and Butterfly
resorts to Buttercup.
-Abigail Elizabeth Ottley
zticky wit zweetiez
zticky with winez
your redz & witez
hangry drunk baztardz
one by one
by one by one
-Elizabeth A. McGowan
Monarch Butterflies at Watch Hill Light
They have come as far as I have, further,
and lighter, nothing but the breath of themselves,
and now they are going back.
Dozen by half dozen they do not pause,
but throw themselves into today’s stillness
over the ocean, lost to view instantly.
And I, too, will launch myself
over the Atlantic, taking with me
only this light. Walking its beam
Note: Monarch butterflies migrate impossible distances from the northern USA to Mexico. Watch Hill is in Rhode Island, and the light faces due south.
-Jennifer A. McGowan
Bios and Links
-Abigail Elizabeth Ottley
writes poetry and short fiction. Her work has appeared in more than two hundred magazines, journals and anthologies. A former English teacher with a lifelong interest in history, Abigail lives in Penzance where she cares for her very elderly mother and is currently writing her first novel.
lives in Bedfordshire. Her work has appeared in Sledgehammer Lit and will be published in Spelt Magazine end of June. Suzy wrote and directed plays for the Civic Centre in Tainan, Taiwan, on British pantomime theme. She is working on a pamphlet exploring themes of feminine cultural and historical tradition. Twitter: @susisu371
is a broadcast journalist, freelance engagement consultant and writer in South Wales.
She writes poems for enjoyment – and when they land in her head.
Her writing has appeared in various editions published by Back Bough Poetry, as well as the Wombwell Rainbow, The Tide Rises, Falls and has featured as Spillwords Author of the Month.
is a writer and co-founder of the small indie publisher Dunlin Press. He grew up on the edge of the Lake District, lives in Wivenhoe, Essex. He is regularly published in poetry journals, also works as a journalist and sometimes lectures in creative writing. His second collection of poetry, Pomes Flixus, is available at https://dunlinpress.bigcartel.com/.
is from Manchester, and has lived for many years on the Atlantic coast of Ireland. Most of her recent poems are about the sea, and her coastal community. Her poems are published in Ireland, the U.K., the U.S. and Australia, and her collection Thimblerig was published in 2013. She has just completed a PhD on the poetry of Anne Carson.
is an award-winning novelist and poet. Her sixth poetry collection, The Celery Forest, was named a CBC Best Book of the Year and was a finalist for the Fred Cogswell Award for Excellence in Poetry. Her debut novel Quarry won an Independent Publisher Book Awards gold medal for fiction, “The Very Best!” Book Awards for Best Fiction and was a finalist for the Sarton Women’s Book Award for Contemporary Fiction and Fred Kerner Book Award. She teaches creative writing at the University of Toronto where she won an Excellence in Teaching Award. A previous winner of TIFA’s Poetry NOW, she currently leads their monthly Book Club. Æther: an out-of-body lyric appears in 2020 with Wolsak & Wynn/Buckrider Books. www.catherinegraham.com. Tweets at @catgrahampoet
writes and performs, usually with the Tees Women Poets Collective. Her work has been widely published online and in print, most recently in Dreich anthologies, Amethyst Review, Green Ink Poetry and the anthology Hard Times Happen (Black Pear Press.) She was Highly Commended in the 2021 YorkMix Poems for Children competition and her poem video, Dracula’s Café, was shown on BBC Upload Festival 2021. Her poetry chapbook Watching a Heron with Davey is published by Black Light Engine Room Press.
lives and works in Sheffield. For 30 years he worked in education with vulnerable and neurodiverse children before belatedly discovering that recent governments may not be prioritizing the marginalized in society. Now he trains people in positive mental health and how to recover from the pandemic. He writes poems, paints, chops logs, cycles everywhere and shops local.