Welcome to crayne & the bee, a weekly newsletter where I’ll be sharing “hive poems” written using words submitted to me by followers on my Instagram. In addition to my own poems, I’ll try to share other things I’ve loved that week, including other poets, poems from my shelves, and art pieces that resonate with me. I may even throw in a prompt here and there!

If you’re into poetry, want inspiration for your own creative process, or just want a bit of art and prose to fill your email every week, feel free to subscribe and see what I’ve got planned:

Join the hive!

And if you like my newsletter, you could share with your friends :)

what does crayne & the bee mean or stand for?

Growing up, I had two last names, no hyphen: Crayne Beall. This led to many horrible nicknames and schoolyard taunts. By horrible, I mean the kids who said them were, even if the words themselves weren’t nasty. Crayon. Beetle. Bell. CB or Sea Bee (this one a play on my initials, MCB). Everyone misspelled or misread my names aloud, and still do.

Many writers choose a pen name, and I go by Megan Crayne now. But as I contemplated the title of my newsletter, I came back to my identity as a writer, my identity as a whole. As a professional writer, I didn’t want to be “CB”, yet my last names have formed who I am today as an individual. I can’t deny that.

So, a brief explanation: “Crayne” is said like the bird; the “Y” adds nothing more than decoration. “The Bee” stands for my other last name, so you don’t even have to attempt to say it aloud. Also, the word “and” can be boring and invisible. Ampersands bring me great joy.

I liked the ring of the title, as well as the images it evoked: a crane taking flight, wind under wing, the sun slowly setting. A bee softly buzzing, humming over some moss and petals along the street. & as for the owl - well who doesn’t associate owls with wisdom, with careful observation, with poetics? I have yet to name our owl friend — but stay tuned.

crayne & the bee is utterly and wholly my own. It’s my identity blended with that of nature, the environment, and the organisms that I love to feature in my poetry. As someone who struggles so with titles, there it simply was. And is.

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