Hornet-Rip, Poor Bumble Bee. Murky Sky. Paint. Ruin. Cruel Anxiety.

This morning, when I went outside to pull the garbage can from the street I heard buzzing, it sounded like a bee hive. I stopped to listen, figure out where the sound was coming from. Little flowers from the pepper tree were scattered on the ground. I sneezed. I’ve never noticed the pepper tree bloom like this. I saw a bee, then I noticed many bees, honey bees buzzing all over the pepper tree. Some bees flew to the ground and crawled all over the blossoms that had fallen from the tree. I wondered, did the bees come from down the street? My neighbor raises honey bees. I left a note on his house on my way to take Jack to school. He hasn’t called yet to claim his bees. As I was putting Jack’s lunch box in the car I noticed a bee on the ground being attacked by a bright yellow hornet. I watched as the hornet smothered the bee and flew off with half the bees body. I couldn’t believe what I saw. The remaining half of the honey bee was still alive, it’s little legs in a desperate dance. It was shocking and cruel and natural. I didn’t like it and I am worried about the fate of the remaining honey bees. They are not technically on our property, the Pepper tree is on my neighbor’s property, even though I feel the pepper tree belongs to me in an emotional way. If my neighbors, see the bees will they call an exterminator? Or will the bee keeper from below come and round up the bees and try to bring them to his bee hives? Or will a swarm of yellow jackets come and gorge on the rest of the honey bees? That would be the worst. I’ve seen a hawk gut a mouse, that didn’t upset me too much. The hornet ripping off half the bees body has upset me.

Today is strange muggy East coast warm. That still air, lightly clouded skies. I can see haze on the horizon towards Mount Diablo. It was clear yesterday. I found myself in a false joy, or a real short-lived joy- under bright blue skies and a temperate sun. The smoke finally blown away for a day. But today I can see that pollution again. It’s time to go to my studio, to paint, and work. I need to. I haven’t had enough time alone, enough time to work. It’s very important to me.

My studio time is almost up now. I worked on paper. Fighting the mush. Crawling my way through the muck. Figures fighting their way back into the paper. Draw, scratch, make a mess. Fighting anxiety of my fear of someone coming home, someone disturbing me. Disturbing my disturbed self. The anxiety of this overtakes me. I have a hard time focusing, I’m so worried someone will stop me from working. I’m afraid someone will knock on the door or worse, open it without knocking. I fight this fear. I fight through this anxiety. I paint, only in black and white. I ruin almost everything. The paper soggy.

My mind soggy. Myself, not too sociable. I wonder how the bumble bees are? I’m going to see in a while.

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Thoughts on Motherhood Through the Eyes of an Artist