Heather honey, dark and viscous,
Redolent of Surrey heaths,
Ripe for taking from the comb
By two perspiring honey thieves.
Outside, the garden honey bees,
Clustered on the window pane;
Watch us rob their golden store
And rage at labour done in vain.
A ten-year old apprentice
I’m at my father’s side
As he uncaps the waxen seals
That stem the honey tide.
I crank the spindle’s handle
And hear the honey rains
As a thousand molten droplets
Fly from the spinning frames.
I open up the sticky spigot ’
At the bottling I’m a star ’
The honey bulges from the tank,
I catch its coils in polished jars.
Smiling at the stolen essence,
My father holds it to the light,
I lick my honeyed fingers,
And share his pleasure at the sight.