▲ Mushroom cloud at Nagasaki, 1945.

Pollen gathered out of lemon flowers open in the moonlight dusts the deepest recesses of the colony, where the queen dwells in splendid royal jelly.

They go about the hive in clusters, working with fine intent, mending waxy hexagons and sealing tiny leaks, never thinking of the coming years of cold when their honey might crystallize.

Their buzzing, late of a liturgical character, is — although never disturbed by distant gargling tractors — moved to frenzy beneath the blind numb thunder made by men’s folly.

Clouds of smoke rise and birds faint from the sky.

The bees keep working in the dark after the sun winks out, working until there are no more flowers, no more pollen. In the end they gather tightly at the core and synchronously shiver for warmth until their are no more bees either.

This entry is part of my journal, published January 29, 2014, in New York.