Which Bee would it be, it so bee-wildered me,
was it a bare Carpenter, or a hairy Bumblebee?
The darting and diving, bee-trayed the family,
up close I saw bee-tter, bee-spoke the anatomy.
Bee-lated I remem-bee-red, 48 species of thee,
only in Himalayas, Bumblebees buzzed with glee.
Bee-tween 16 black species, markings I had to see,
bee-hold it defined, the Carpenter bee-fore me.
Gender was no sweat, as I found out accidentally,
Only females have stingers, painful un-bee-arably!
[Framed: A female Tropical Carpenter Bee (Xylocopa latipes) levitates over one of the cucurbit flowers (Luffa sp.) in a sea of yellow amidst the seasonal bloom at Aarey Forest, Mumbai]
– Narendra Nayak © 2021