Globe Mallow Bee

By Hanna Johnson

I lay my body down 
on orange sands 
the sharp remnants of dead weeds
prick at my vertebrae.
Eye level with a scarlet globe mallow 
I whisper Hello,
as we both wait for the 
hum of wings and
a grey bodied bee.

Bees in the genus Diadasia 
are exclusively found in
deserts and grasslands, the west, 
where cacti and globe mallows
dominate arid landscapes. 
They carve tunnels in well packed soil
people don’t expect bees 
to nest on trails and roads.

I tell all this to the pink haired artist 
as the needle punctures my skin. 
She nods How fascinating 
After an hour, 
I leave the parlor 
and take another desert dweller with me.

Hannah Johnson is a botanist working in the red rock vistas and plateaus of Southern Utah. The landscape surrounding her is infectious and filled with awe. Much of her work is inspired by the landscapes and plants she encounters while working and playing among the rocks and flowers.

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