Emma Thomas Jones

The Company Sign

First it was honeybees. Thousands of them, coughed up
into tissue blooms: cylindrical workers & fat drones
more orange than yellow, curled like fetuses in pistils
of blood—thousands of them rummaging in your lungs

like your father rummaged for bolts in his toolbox
to fasten together wobbly parts of planes, thousands
of honeybees collecting on the sentient, pink walls
inside you—you coughed up the dead into tissues,

into your pillow as you slept, dreamless; kept
finding honeybees scattered stiff & weightless on the floor,
wings translucent as amber; kept coughing bees
into the shower basin, where water carried them</