A Fool’s Prayer

Inspired by this “horror poem” by Davis McCombs, another Kentucky native son. Listen here. It’s a good one.

Dumpster Honey

The bees were working the contents
of the fenced-in metal trash bin,
zigging and scribbling past the goo

of candy wrappers and the sticky rims
of dented cans, entering, as they might
a blossom, the ketchup-smeared burger

boxes and the mold-fuzzed, half-eaten
fruity snack packs, those food-grade waxes
mingling with Band-Aids and a limp

“We’re #1” foam finger while on top
of the disposable wet mop redolent of solvents
and fresheners the F.D.&C. Red No. 40

nontoxic food pigment leaked
from a bloated dip packet where the bees
were buzzing and collecting the high-fructose

corn nectars of that uncompacted jumble
and returning, smudged with the dust
of industrial pollens, to, perhaps, some

rusted tailpipe hive where their queen
grew fat on the froth of artificial sweeteners
out back of the little oily gas station

in the middle of Arkansas where we pulled off
to change the baby’s diaper and had to ask
for the key they kept on a giant ring.

https://soundcloud.com/newyorker/listen-to-davis-mccombs-read-dumpster-honey

One Reply to “A Fool’s Prayer”

  1. If the Lord, or creator, or unknown spark that created human life on this planet had not ignited our journey we’d not be here to ask forgiveness for the ways we’ve used this gift.

    Ask forgiveness. Then get off your knees and try to find ways to do it better today, and tomorrow, and the day following that.

    And if we don’t do well enough, ask forgiveness again. Keep trying, until we no longer wake up with the dawn for another day.

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