Matador Review

A Quarterly Missive of Alternative Concern

Marguerite L. harrold


"Mis-Identifying"


I think I know which one you are

Bumble bees do buzz low deep and throaty
But you staggered

Shimmy pimpin'
Circling my head and feet as if I am the sweet

Bold brown next to Wood Sorrel's happy green
Heart shaped leaves mistaken for clover every time

One way to know for sure
Eat it    Tastes like lemon

*

Seems you thought we were together
And this was some kind of mating

Me a new flower
Smelling like Shea butter Bergamot Pink hair oil & weed

Your instincts were right
Marguerite is a kind of daisy

A weed waving by the side of the road
Like me they'll grow anywhere

*

I think maybe you are a Cuckoo Bee
Only the boys have black red & yellow body markings

Thick antennae ready plunge
Yesterday you were so persistent I thought you were a wasp

*

Could you be a European Honey Bee
Maybe but they're all women

And you wouldn't be still
Long enough for me to touch your hair

*

I'm often mistaken for a mammy/earth mother/sexpot/sage

Back when I was bald
Before my locks

It was all Black Rebel Girl/Grace Jones/Bull Dyke/Drag

My presumed rage prevented people from stopping
To ask me directions

Or tell me how much I look like Whoopi Goldberg
Or touch me

*

Black people are probably supposed to hate bees
Except if they're from Seattle or Portland

Midwesterners are supposed to shoot them with their guns
Then miss & kill the young chickens dancing in the corn field

*

Just like us
What they say about you can't be true

Females do not make their own nests;
they lay their eggs in the nest of other bees,
and their larvae feed on the pollen collected by the host bees.
**

Just like they do
I'm going to go ahead and assume you're European

**From Pocket Guide to Identifying the Bees of Portland- Portland Parks & Recreation


Marguerite L. Harrold earned a Masters of Fine Art in Creative Writing (Poetry with Honors) from Columbia College Chicago. She is a member of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and attended the Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writer's Conference. She recently retired from Chicago Department of Public Health after 20 years of service in the Divisions HIV Prevention and Environmental Health, in order to pursue Poetry and Naturalist work, while she travels the world. She currently lives on the road and expects to be in Fiji by Fall 2018. Her poetry has been published in or is forthcoming in Rigorous, SHANTIH, Tipton Poetry Journal, 5X5, Winter 2010, Melbourne Poetry Project, RHINO: The Poetry Forum, 2010, Spaces Between Us: Poetry, Prose and Art on HIV/AIDS, 2010, Eleven Eleven: Journal of Literature & Art, Columbia Poetry Review No. 19, and others. She can be found on Twitter at @Discokayaker.