Taylor is part husbandman, part naturalist, part philosopher, mainly putterer. This is the cozy tale of his seasonal activities among his hives, from the swarming in the spring to the fall honey flow and later spinning in his workshop sanctuary, away from the perils and irritations of real life -- like his university president who once dropped in to ask Taylor to go sailing, of all frivolous, foolish things, and indirectly caused a terrible muck-up of beeswax in the steam boiler system. . . . He admires his much maligned insects because unlike, say, those dumb domesticated horses or chickens, bees remain untamed and uncorrupted by man. They represent the eternal mystery and assurance Nature offers: ""I gaze in unuttered reverence, and I am fulfilled."" Congenial, old-fashioned countrified wisdom -- a simple pleasure.