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There is a wasps nest just outside the narrow little window of the cell I exist in. It has been there, empty, for the few years that I have been in this particular space.

The nest has always been both small and unoccupied, and I was told that wasps will not build on an abandoned nest, but somehow and for some reason this one of a sudden became inhabited.

It was odd in that I could see an occasional single wasp fly by, and even sometimes one would land and seem to inspect it then leave. None would stay, and no other nest was built in the area of this window as others had two.

I have no idea of the lifespan of these particular wasps, but as with any insect it cannot be so long as to think that these same individuals who landed and probed were the same year after year.

As I remarked though, of a sudden one did come and stayed and started to build. Then another and so on until an old nest of only four or five cells became much larger and much more busy. There was life and activity where there hadn’t been for a long time.

All of this I could observe from mere inches away, and like anything different and new here you gravitate to it and observe it as an unusual experience that may never occur again.

Cells are sealed and larvae grow inside. Some are deemed unworthy and taken out prematurely to be killed and consumed by their own kind. Others are deemed worthy to contribute and left to live accordingly.

But what does a wasp do exactly? What is its purpose? It doesn’t make honey like a bee and they can’t be much of a food source. If approached, they attack and cause pain, so what good do they do?

Years of nothing and then these creatures which you normally avoid at all costs appear and demand your attention as you ponder the meaning of existence for such a dangerous creature.

Maybe my observations and ponderings would normally be of no consequence to anyone but perhaps the timing of all this is significant when context and comparison are considered…

All of this happened in the Summer and Fall of 2020. 20 years after I was falsely accused, testified against and ultimately given a death sentence by and because of a dangerous creature. A dangerous creature who deemed herself worthless and without purpose other than to inflict pain, and yes, even kill.

Twenty years after being stung, betrayed, attacked and poisoned? Vanessa appeared again, of a sudden, to reoccupy, to briefly inhabit and occupy space left abandoned, and for what purpose?

She, just like the wasps, came into my life at a time of doubt and inactivity. They offered reason to wonder and opportunity to ponder the ‘why’ and the purpose for things normally avoided and known to cause pain.

For me, in this instance, the purpose of witnessing a cycle of life up close and personal, gave cause to remind that some creatures only exist to hurt, and even to kill if you get too close.

Perhaps that is their reason for being, to remind us of what they can only ever be… a source of pain.

The wasps didn’t come back this year, and Vanessa died this year.. The only reminder of their existence is a tattered nest of dead empty cells. The nest is shaped like a brain, one left abandoned inside these prison walls.

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