The mirror reflects the arrival of bees

hence we sit with drinks untouched.
Flowers affect the room

with gentle coughing.
The boy with scabs

nailed to his knees
is written down in name

and offered to us in small
envelopes. We discuss

coffin size and color
because the material universe

must be broken down
into small manageable boxes.

On the east side of the room,
the wallpaper peels off

to unmask finger-painted
animals. The house

is emptied into different
ringtones like an umbrella

turned inside-out
by the wind. And what of bees?

They sting us before they die.
Lace curtains billow

over their bodies on the sill,
nibbling away the light.


Arlene Ang
Copyright © 2014  

Arlene Ang’s latest poetry collection Banned for Life was published by Misty Publications in 2014. Her poems have appeared in Ambit, Caketrain, Diagram, DMQ Review, Poetry Ireland, Poet Lore, Rattle, Salt Hill as well as the Best of the Web anthologies 2008 and 2009 (Dzanc Books). She lives in Spinea, Italy. Website:

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