essay 2: *** Honeybee Flight ***
Short-amplitude high-frequency wing strokes determine the aerodynamics of honeybee flight - PNAS - 2005
John J. Audubon's Birds of America - unabridged, digital, hundreds of high-res prints
Flight of Bees
It's that they fly, you know ...
As a metaphor for freedom,
stretching wings and lifting into air
is a powerful sign of what they do so easily
… while for us, it is the stuff of dreams.
Walking to the threshold, each bee launches herself
straight out and up
toward distant fields, gravity beaten in flight.
Returning foragers hover in mid-air,
waiting to land.
If they crawled out of the hive
and then scurried back
- ants instead of bees -
their honey might still be sweet,
but the magic would be gone.
They would then be us:
a laboring multitude, proud of their work,
but trapped by circumstance
in a two dimensional world.
It's that they fly …