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Our Green Cathedral by Jeremy Barnes
Our Green Cathedral by Jeremy Barnes

Review by David Papke

At first glance, Our Green Cathedral may appear to be simply a compilation of articles written by Jeremy Barnes for various beekeeping journals and newsletters. But, look again. This is not yet another manual on how to keep bees or even what’s the problem with bees these days – not directly. Thankfully. Rather, these are concise personal essays (95 in all) addressing the current state of our natural world and humanity’s place in it as seen through the eyes of a practiced beekeeper. Indeed, though his passion for apiculture is often the impetus for his reflections, an innate curiosity compels him to look beyond the mere surface of things to discover the histories, the symbioses, the connections underlying the big picture. He challenges our assumptions and conventional thinking, not with the power of his reasoning or the weight of his arguments; he is more subtle than that. His conversational style, his humor and honesty, his masterly employment of quotation and anecdote convincingly win the day. For Barnes, the bee yard is a place of contemplation and insight, a refuge from the anxiety and divisiveness of the modern world, and like a green cathedral, a home for mystery and beauty. In the end, we are left with a clear impression of a man who cares deeply for the future of our planet and human-kind’s existence in it. This thought-provoking volume of essays belongs to that long history of literature which reflects on the hive and the honey bee as models and metaphors for society and the ways of the world.
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Our Green Cathedral
Reflections On Honey Bees, the Environment and the Human Condition
by Jeremy Barnes

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