To A Butterfly
I’ve watched you now a full half-hour,
Self-poised upon that yellow flower;
And, little Butterfly! indeed
I know not if you sleep or feed.
How motionless! – not frozen seas
More motionless! and then
What joy awaits you, when the breeze
Hath found you out among the trees,
And calls you forth again!
This plot of orchard-ground is ours;
My trees they are, my Sister’s flowers;
Here rest your wing when they are weary;
Here lodge as in a sanctuary!
Come often to us, fear no wrong;
Sit near us on the bough!
We’ll talk of sunshine and of song,
And summer days, when we were young;
Sweet childish days, that were as long
As twenty days are now.
Stay near me–do not take thy flight!
A little longer stay in sight!
Much converse do I find in thee,
Historian of my infancy!
Float near me; do not yet depart!
Dead times revive in thee:
Thou bring’st, gay creature as thou art!
A solemn image to my heart,
My father’s family!
Oh! pleasant, pleasant were the days,
The time, when, in our childish plays,
My sister Emmeline and I
Together chased the butterfly!
A very hunter did I rush
Upon the prey:–with leaps and springs
I followed on from brake to bush;
But she, God love her, feared to brush
The dust from off its wings.
I feel sorry
By Marin Sorescu 1936–1996 Marin Sorescu
Translated By Ioana Russell-Gebbett
I feel sorry for the butterflies
When I turn off the light,
And for the bats
When I switch it on . . .
Can’t I take a single step
Without offending someone?
So many odd things happen
That I want to hold
My head in my hands,
But an anchor thrown from the sky
Pulls them down . . .
It’s not time yet
To tear up the sails.
Let things be.
Come fly with me….
We’ll wing through mystical whimsy,
feel the wind of unconquered dreams in our face…
soar on the fanciful illusions
of souls bold enough to fly free.
We’ll weave through webs
of long forgotten hopes…
brush the soft lips
of what still may be.
Donning our rose-colored glasses,
we’ll then plunge through the lonely of grief.
We may explore but briefly, the tree of truths
seeing them only as we wish them to be.
We’ll tickle the lashes of gay giggling children…
stuff in our pockets all that they say.
We’ll sprinkle their heads with safe golden wishes…
rain a river of kisses as we fly gaily away.
For words on the wings of another’s pen
can lift us to a far different place…
distractions of flight for a heavy heart…
gifts of uplifting light for a dark dismal day.
Free the butterflies-
I’ll be there
to see them soar
upon the air.
Know my spirit
is on the wing,
feel my laughter-
hear me sing.
Forever in your dreams
always in your heart.
Just like the butterfly, I too will awaken in my own time.
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An American Indian Legend
If anyone desires a wish to come true they must first capture a butterfly and whisper that wish to it.
Since a butterfly can make no sound, the butterfly can not reveal the wish to anyone but the Great Spirit who hears and sees all.
In gratitude for giving the beautiful butterfly its freedom, the Great Spirit always grants the wish.
So, according to legend, by making a wish and giving the butterfly its freedom, the wish will be taken to the heavens and be granted. The following line is often added when the Legend is read prior to releasing butterflies at a wedding:
We have gathered to grant this couple all our best wishes and are about to set these butterflies free in trust that all these wishes will be granted.
The Butterfly Dance
I stand in the rain, feeling love begin.
Smatterings of the glass fall against my –
Frail frame, as the love peels off all my skin,
A tragedy under a falling sky.
Nervous butterflies danced through my warm veins.
I fell in love and out of fantasy,
Come see me yearning, under this cold rain.
Feeling time count-down to our ecstasy
I search my vacant mind for all the ways,
To believe you love like you say you…
Could. I’m so tired, give me a place to lay –
This lost lovelorn heart of mine, like you should.
You are the umbrella under cold rain,
My love, as butterflies dance through my veins
There are many roads and rivers to travel
but I chose the path of the butterfly
I heard her voice
calling me to her heart
Andy 15 november 2009
I find him eating butterflies. They are beautiful, he says.
If I eat enough of them, I will be beautiful too.
He stuffs a monarch in his mouth,
fuzz clinging to his lips.
I hear the flowers weep.
He begins to eat them too,
stray petals on his shoes.
A hummingbird arrives
dips her bill into his eye,
takes a long, melancholy drink.
What to think is he crazy,
or is he wise? Does beauty mind? Should I?
Teaching the Caterpillar to Fly …A work in progress
The caterpillar crawls and eats and eats.
And grows, shedding its skin but little more.
Crawl, climb, eat. Crawl, climb, eat.
Of all of our lives, can we not soar?
One day as two caterpillars looked
As a beautiful butterfly sailed by.
Of course one said to the other:
“You’ll never get me in a butterfly, high.”
Gratefulness, laughing and smiles.
But no clear understanding or view
Of these ironies and implications
What was The Answer you knew?
Resistance. Perspective. and Change.
All of these and more are involved.
Yet insight is limited. And self-perspective too.
My mother was a moth – this problem is solved.
One must STOP in the caterpillar journey
For transformation, what we can become.
One must change to a much gooey mess
to undergo metamorphosis and change.
Is the potential understood? Is it realized?
We just don’t know. Yet it does.
The Call of The Wild. And the need to Become.
Gain the wings, lose the teeth and the fuzz.
It is about letting go, trust the process
Of growth and experience and your view.
It is Becoming. You are more than you are
With things you already had. And you knew?
The colors are on the butterfly
And already within what we were.
Can we all learn from this? Can we help?
These changes will most surely occur.
By Scott J. Simmerman 2000
In Aztec mythology, Itzpapalotl (“Clawed Butterfly” or “Obsidian Butterfly”) was a fearsome skeletal warrior goddess, who ruled over the paradise world of Tamoanchan, the paradise of victims of infant mortality and place identified where humans were created. She is the mother of Mixcoatl and is particularly associated with the moth Rothschildia orizaba from the family Saturniidae. Some of her associations include birds and fire. Her nahualli was a deer.
Itzpapalotl’s name can either mean “obsidian butterfly” or “clawed butterfly”, the latter meaning seems most likely. It’s quite possible that clawed butterfly refers to the bat and in some instances Itzpapalotl is depicted with bat wings. However, she can also appear with clear butterfly or eagle attributes. Her wings are obsidian or tecpatl (flint) knife tipped. (In the Manuscript of 1558, Itzpapalotl is described as having “blossomed into the white flint, and they took the white and wrapped it in a bundle.”) She could appear in the form of a beautiful, seductive woman or terrible goddess with a skeletal head and butterfly wings supplied with stone blades. Although the identity remains inconclusive, the Zapotec deity named Goddess 2J by Alfonso Caso and Ignacio Bernal may be a Classic Zapotec form of Itzpapalotl. In many instances Goddess 2J, whose image is found on ceramic urns, is identified with bats. “In folklore, bats are sometimes called “black butterflies””.
Itzpapalotl is the patron of the day Cozcuauhtli and Trecena 1 House in the Aztec calendar. The Trecena 1 House is one of the five western trecena dates dedicated to the cihuateteo, or women who had died in childbirth. Not only was Itzpapalotl considered one of the cihuateteo herself, but she was also one of the tzitzimime, star demons that threatened to devour people during solar eclipses.
As the legend goes, Itzpapalotl fell from heaven along with Tzitzimime and several other shapes such as scorpions and toads. Itzpapalotl wore an invisible cloak so that no one could see her. At some times, she was said to have dressed up like a lady of the Mexican Court, caking her face with white powder and lining her cheeks with strips of rubber. Her fingers tapered into the claws of a jaguar, and her toes into eagle’s claws.
According to the Manuscript of 1558, section VII, Itzpapalotl was one of two divine 2-headed doe-deers (the other one being Chimalman) who temporarily transformed themselves into women in order to seduce men. Itzpapalotl approached the two “cloud serpents named Xiuhnel and Mimich”, who transformed themselves into men (so as to disguise themselves when all the others of the Centzonmimixcoa had been slain in the ambush?). To Xiuhnel, Itzpapalotl said “”Drink, Xiuhnel.” Xiuhnel drank the blood (menstrual?) and then immediately lay down with her. Suddenly she … devoured him, tore open his breast. … Then Mimich … ran and … descended into a thorny barrel cactus, fell into it, and the woman fell down after him.