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I try to have a conversation with God.
I walk from my apartment to the café and say things like,
“I don’t know how to talk to you,” and mean them.
I try to name what worries me. There’s a sound I realize
I hear and am bothered by. It’s like traffic. When I look for it,
I see I’m in a cloud of bees. There are some bees close to me and I don’t know
where to move or what authorities to call.
I don’t want them to be killed just because they’re bees.
I don’t want to be hurt. I hunch down and run a little ways
until I can look back on them. They’re as tall as a building
and almost as wide. They are a little like a tornado
and a little unlike anything that isn’t bees.
“Wow, do you see these bees?” I ask.
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But I do miss the hymns, / the small, hard apples with their dimpled skin. I do miss / things.
The vast hinterlands of the Global South’s cities are generating new solidarities and ideas of what counts as a life worth living.
Protests in China are shining a light not only on the country’s draconian population management but restrictions on workers everywhere.