Wednesday, February 7, 2018
I ran across this and a few other short pieces I wrote while going through a divorce, living in a place where I had not yet formed friendships…3000 miles from old friends, relatives, and familiar faces. This was around 1980.
Holding butterflies is a bad idea. Firstly, they are delicate creatures and are easily crushed or killed. Even if they escape death, chances are they’ll be hurt and wounded by any direct contact with humans. No one knows how a butterfly treats it’s wounds, but we do know that, once injured, the first thing a butterfly does is attempt, at the first opportunity, to get away from the source of it’s pain….in this case the human hand that has caused it’s injury. If the butterfly recovers, it will fly to many places, but never will it return to the fist that hurt it.
If a butterfly should land on you, even directly onto the palm of your hand, you must keep the palm open. The creature may linger for a while, but usually it flies off in just a few seconds. The temptation might be to impulsively prevent it by closing the fist. That is not good. Let it fly away unmolested. Wherever it flies, but if it senses that the hand that set it free still awaits, it’s gentle touch, it may decide to return. But, of course, it may not.