If we were having coffee, I’d be gushing over poet Adam O’Riordan, reading his words aloud.  He opens In the Flesh with a page-long poem called, simply, “Manchester”.


Manchester (in recovery from a terror attack) is the city of his birth.



In the Flesh is his first collection of poems, a winner of a Somerset Maugham Award.  Adam O’Riordan ~ imaginative, emotive. The world being as it is, you will do well to seek him out. Can I pick up a copy for you?

His next book, A Herring Famine, will be published in 2017 along with his debut book of stories, The Burning Ground.

I wonder if he is sporting this tattoo.  Would you be, if you were a Mancunian?


Artists are offering tattoos of a bee for £50 with all profits going to aid victims of the attack.

O’Riordon happens to be a Manchester native son. And nearly as famous as the bee, the enduring symbol of Manchester’s hard workers.  I read that in the 1800s, the city was awash with textile mills that were commonly described as ‘hives of activity’ and the workers inside them compared to bees.



The bee is everywhere in Manchester – on the clock face of the Palace Hotel, the mosaic flooring at Manchester Town Hall, and even above the arches of Links of London.



The beehive has long been one of the main symbols of the Cooperative Movement, representing working together for the good of the whole. I love that concept, don’t you?


I discovered that the folks at Bombas are big fans of bees too. Their whole hive works together to pollinate the world. When you buy a pair of socks, they donate a pair.  Isn’t that just a honey of an idea?  BTW, My socks just arrived and they are epic.

What are you waiting for? You, too, can have a shpadoinkle day! 


“The word Bombas is derived from the Latin word for bumblebee. Bees work together to make the hive a better place.  We like that. When we say Bee Better, we mean it as a mantra, a way of approaching every day. It’s stitched into the inside of every pair of Bombas for a reason. It’s a reminder that these socks are engineered and designed with thought to bee better. A reminder that you helped someone in need with your purchase. And a reminder that we’re all connected and little improvements can add up to make a big difference.”



I’m so grateful for poetry that heals my soul and socks that cradle my soles.  And, of course, bees.

Real bees never send invoices, do they?



Toni 5/29/17

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