The Language of Memory (The Bees)

Are they memory
the bees on her hand
held in amber on the sunlit
camber of the beach
as if they’d swarmed

scattering their gold black fur?
She has no fear of them
nor they of her     fair strands
of flying hair     her hand
with its warmth of sand

Were they cupped
in a globe of trickling grains
or did she lift each one
by the shimmering
folded lens of its wings?

Are they memory     or its gaps?
The day’s ornate surface
a cracked glaze     the bees
on her hand     gold and black
fragments of their own erasure

from The Body in Space, Shearsman, 2014