The Trimble Bee

<em>Some Salisbury bees are to be made less aggressive, thanks to a lottery grant, so as not to frig

I'm humbler than a bumble,

With wings like wispy gauze:

On pollen hunts, my sting is blunt

When busy out of doors.

No habit-forming swarming

Through wild and angry air!

Inside my comb, it's welcome home -

For honey I don't care.

All folk may stroke me slowly

On black and orange fuzz.

I'll feed you well on royal jelly,

Moderate my buzz.

But wait! A waspish rival

Has put me to the test -

So now I'll drive you from my hive

Though smoke will fill the nest.

All bees, they say, are social:

Well, that's as might-have-been -

All apiarists are on my list.

Beware. God Save The Queen.

This article first appeared in the 03 April 2000 issue of the New Statesman, Englishness: who cares?