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 for Sandra McPherson

A man whose arms and shoulders
and hands and face and ears are covered with bees
says, I’ve never known such pain.
Another man comes over
with bees all over his hands—
only bees can get the other bees off.
The first man says again,
I’ve never known such pain.
The second man’s bees begin to pluck
the first grave yellow bees off, one by one.

Door in the Mountain: New & Collected Poems