Work Ethics

A diligence we hardly know
is innate in the butterfly,
in honey bee and bumblebee,
in moths and beetles passing by.

Of course, the flowers beckon them—
perfume and nectar have their way,
for colors call and dews that fall
provide them nourishment each day.

Who is not drawn by beauty’s glance
to work without complaint, and sing
without trusting the winds of chance
to spread new life to everything?

What if we knew God fashioned them
to be our link to all that grows?
Then would we raise them, like a hymn?
Show reverence? God only knows.


Poem by Jane Shlensky

Jane Shlensky, a veteran English teacher and musician, holds an MFA from UNC-Greensboro. She has recent poetry in a number of online and print magazines and anthologies, including Writer’s Digest, Martin Lake Journal, KAKALAK, Southern Poetry Anthology: NC, and Poetry Market. Her poems have twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and her short stories recognized as finalists in Press 53, Doris Betts, and Thomas Wolfe contests. Jane’s poetry chapbook Barefoot on Gravel (2016) is available from Finishing Line Press.