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Origin of Relief
Best of the Net Nominee 2023

Bees launch their hovercrafts

among bee balm landing pads.


Pillars of nature / herbal allies.


Leaves veined in memory,

brushed by dinosaur skin.

Chloroplast walls,

house antiseptic soup.


It is August, bees cling

to the ghostly seed pods.

Did they beacon our arrival?


Was our ancient gray matter

tuned to messages of steeping tea

and rubbing wounds?


Did Adam and Eve’s sweat

muddle with the balm’s peppery mist?


When did we first tear open a life

and use it to further our own?


The balm of questions.

Answers equal to the sting

of a thousand bees.

Robin Neal is a graduate student at the MFA creative writing program at Lindenwood University. She has been previously published in The Raven’s Perch and The Wild Word. She resides in Spring Hill, TN as a mother, wife, woman, creative dreamer, and writer. Most importantly she writes for all women who have something to say and know there is a meaning to their lives. For the past 17 years she has worked as a nutritional scientist and this influences her work today.

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