You can train the eye to spot her
among her many daughters;
elongated abdomen, the dark
thorax worn like a shield.
And the way the others face her:
a retinue of petals around
a flower’s ovary. They chose her,
raised her, feed her, guard her.
They would, if needed,
surround her in a ball,
with their bodies warm her,
kill her with their heat.
Rebecca Patrascu works as a library associate for the Sonoma County Library. Her writing has appeared in publications including Smartish Pace, Glint, The Shore, Bracken Magazine, Prairie Schooner, Colorado Review, and Valparaiso Review. She has an MFA from Pacific University and is the author of the chapbook Before Noon. She catches honeybee swarms in the spring.