The Butterfly

The Butterfly

butterflies flying


“I love it here” the caterpillar said,

Cozy – in woven, silken thread.

“Within my tent, I’m wrapped and warm,

Safely cocooned away from harm.”

Slowly transformed, soft flesh left no trace,

A chrysalis grew in chestnut-like case.

Then wings began sprouting and as they unfurled

This embryo creature emerged to the world.

She longed to return, our fledgling young flier,

She yearned for her past away from the mire.

“Don’t make me grow up! I don’t want to be free!

If I’m forced to observe, what might I see?”

Her fragile wings trembled, her feelers grew long.

“I’ll return to the womb until I am strong.”

But the chrysalis had changed, a winged insect was born,

Looked to the sky, whence she was drawn.

Up, up she flew, dazzling wings caught air’s current,

The further she went, what she saw was not pleasant:

Displaced, drifting people, wrenched from their lands;

Their suffering dismayed her – she averted her glance.

She wished not to see, and in spite of resistance,

Earth’s canvas rolled out with steady persistence.

She witnessed the pain, she felt with her feelers,

Battered by winds, she searched for the healers.

Weary, disheartened, aching of wing,

She spied a caged bird, with plumes startling.

She took in its beauty, gazed at its splendor,

Green-blue, red-gold, iridescent – such grandeur!

“Of the state of the world, what do you think?”

She asked of the bird, who gave her a wink.

“I don’t!” squawked the parrot, “I repeat what I’ve heard:

Besides nothing makes sense. The whole lot is absurd!”

Sad, dis-spirited, without any purpose,

She fell to earth, soul troubled and restless.

While lying forlorn, death-like and still,

A child stood close by who saw she was ill.

Her wings to the sun, their colours so radiant,

He’d never beheld a creature more brilliant.

Transfixed, the boy felt wonder and pleasure,

He stretched out his hand to take hold of this treasure.

She, on her guard, moved back to stay calm,

Watched the boy – saw – he meant her no harm.

That instant her mission became crystal clear,

She had not left home to succumb to her fear;

Nor to mourn and despair, nor to struggle and fight,

Her duty was other, not to fix the world’s plight.

She was lovely, exquisite, short-lived, this she knew,

And she owed it to nature to simply be true.


By Gabrielle Blair
February 14, 2016


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