I spend a lot of time talking about the importance of letting bees be bees. I teach about more natural or bee-centric approaches to beekeeping. I talk about planting for pollinators. I educate on the damages of the monocrop pollination industry and conventional beekeeping. I leave the bees alone most of the time. But sometimes...there’s honey.⠀
Sometimes getting to the honey is messy. It’s sticky and unruly. If you harvest it from natural comb, it means no fancy centrifuge extractor. It’s a knife, a board, and an invitation to the ants. It’s crushing comb with bare hands. It involves destroying something beautiful that took honey and love to make. As in, comb is wax, and wax takes a lot of energy/food (honey) to produce from the body of a bee. Getting to the honey can result in sting, even with your best intentions and gentlest hands. Sometimes you fuck up and the bees tell you in their perfect, piercing language. Sometimes collecting honey is magic. And sometimes it’s a questionable endeavor full of misfortune and mistakes.⠀
All of this for a moment of gold on the tongue. A sun-warmed treasure from the beings that bring us the resplendence of flowers. ⠀
We can’t take too much. It’s part of the rules. Our society tells us take more, but the bees are quite clear: it is their gift to give, not our right to have.⠀
However, when you do find yourself in a moment of honey, between the mess, the blade and the sting, give over to it. Pleasure is sometimes seeking you.
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Angharad has just returned from a walk with a handful of blackberries, elderflowers, nettle and apple. She is going to make a fruit crisp and some tea. Three things about this:
1) Angharad wildcrafts like some people (me) frequent cafes; It’s a nonchalant, every-day sort of thing.