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Relentless Yet Ineffectual Toil

Someone to whom I most recently showed my glass beehive, with its movement like the main gear of a clock—someone who saw the constant agitation of the honeycomb, the mysterious, maddened commotion of the nurse bees over the nests, the invading spirals of the queen, the endlessly varied and repetitive labors of the swarm, the relentless yet ineffectual toil, the fevered comings and goings, the call to sleep, always ignored, undermining the next day’s work, the final repose of death far from a place that tolerates neither sickness nor tombs—someone who observed these things, after the initial astonishment had passed, quickly looked away with an expression of indescribable sadness and horror.

El Espritu de la Colmena, [Spirit of the Beehive] dir. Victor Erice

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