The Bee.

by Solomon Ibn Gabirol

Hear, O Israel, the Lord is one...
that ye remember and do all my commandments.

Take, little bee, your time with your song,
    in your flight intoning the prayer called "Hear" -
declaring and stretching "the Lord is one,"
    raising on high the hum of remember
to he who put honey under your tongue
    and gave you the gall to drive out foes.
It's true, in your eyes you're small-
    but your being transcends the things that swarm,
and the choicest words are yours. Your merit
    refines you: you're pure as the birds of the air.

Quoted after: Cole, Peter (Trans.) (2001). Selected Poems of Solomon Ibn Gabirol. Princeton, Oxford: Princeton University Press. P.69.

Last updated: 2003/10/23