Absolute Zero on the 6 o’clock News

Where the bee sucks…

You often watch me as I go to the wild place
where beetles roll the sun
across the sky and away

I am snipping wing-tips of pin-cushion hakea
What you don’t see is
black-striped bees coming for me

Some are disappearing
through a secret door into the belly
of the bluestone plinth

/ In her Minoan tomb a high priestess
is chewing a laurel leaf

Drones tickle gaura, others rappel down
the crimson throats of kangaroo paw/

But my head is thrumming
with news of the boy

wedged between honeycomb wall
and limestone

A subterranean chill
mingles with his calcium

as the woman excavates
an extra space to plant a bay

finding instead her DNA
petrified in the twisted frame

of her lost son draped in blue
and white striped summer cotton

Bees rise from the body as tears
filling his mother’s empty hives

Julie Maclean


Julie Maclean has published four chapbooks and one collection. Her poetry, fiction, reviews and short fiction have appeared in The Age, Cordite, Island, Overland, Poetry (Chicago), Southerly and international journals.


© 2018