Bee Time: Lessons from the Hive

Mark L. Winston

Bee Time: Lessons from the Hive

Being among bees is a full-body experience, Mark Winston writes from the low hum of tens of thousands of insects and the pungent smell of honey and beeswax, to the sight of workers flying back and forth between flowers and the hive. The experience of an apiary slows our sense of time, heightens our awareness, and inspires awe. Bee Time presents Winston's reflections on three decades spent studying these creatures, and on the lessons they can teach about how humans might better interact with one another and the natural world. (From the publisher)


I removed the lid of the first hive. The bees were surprisingly calm, gentle, going about their business. There was no onslaught. My fear dissipated, and I began to pay attention to the activity in the hive. The gloves came off, then the veil. I pulled out the frames one by one to inspect the combs.

It was one of those moments in life when everything shifts.

It's a full body experience being among the bees. First you hear the sound, the low hum of tens of thousands of female workers flying in and out of their hives, each circling the apiary to get her bearings and then heading off purposefully in a literal beeline toward blooming flowers.

From Bee Time by Mark L.Winston ©2014. Published by Harvard University Press.