“A Flower Does Not Chase a Bee”

Scott Beal


is all you need to know about dating a divorced man
according to at least three books
my lover has browsed from the self-help section.

So (a) our bookstore hosts a whole shelf of guides
to dating marital dropouts; and (b) I find myself,
nigh-divorced, seeing a woman who researches everything,

so she can keep me up to speed
on the latest trends in pan-psychic vitalism
and predict how my body will respond

to vasovagal shock while she holds my hand
through a routine blood draw; and (c) “The only thing
in this world that attracts men is that very ‘light’

of feminine energy that is perfectly represented
by the flower” is the state-of-the-art
in straightwashed pseudoscience

on navigating the romantic morass – “a natural grace,”
one author writes, “when I allow myself
to be a stunning flower and provide a space for men

to be the bee (the natural biological energetic state)
to come to me and taste my nectar.” You might suspect
this doesn’t impress a reader who gets attention

at the transit center for dressing orchid-bright
from men compelled to imagine out loud
what sweet things her pussy tastes like.

You might recall, despite the author’s double down
on natural, that flowers have both male and female sex
organs and female bees are their medium

to get with one another – so a field of flowers
is more like a queer pride parade
than a crowd of hobbled coquettes. And you might

have heard that flowers emit electrical fields
that tell bees flat out when to call
and when to buzz off – which puts new spin

on talk of essential energies. We had a good laugh
picturing the poor array of divorcee bee-men
stealing glances at designer bee watches

as they hover near a bed of marigolds
only to bolt at every too-assertive shake
of petals in a breeze. Then I whited out

as the nurse took a tubule. I don’t know where
I go and never knew what I left behind
until my lover told me. She said it was difficult

to watch. My wide-eyed vibrations
were not what her research had led her to expect.
For a span I had no mind

of man or bee. Then I heard a glint
of her voice and that became my biological
imperative: to find it.