Thursday, June 07, 2007

The Bumbling Butterfly

Smacking into my chest, the delicate creature looked up at me.

"Hello," the befuddled butterfly said. "Are you a flower?"

"No," I said, trying not to smile. "I'm a person."

"I thought so," the butterfly said. "You seemed a bit tall to be a flower. And I couldn't smell any nectar."

"Which flower did you want to see?" I asked.

"I don't remember," the butterfly said, sounding confused. "I believe it was a blue one."

I looked at the grass around me. "I don't see any blue ones. I see some yellow and white ones, but no blue."

"Perhaps it was pink," the butterfly said, his antennae waving wildly. "Oh dear, oh dear..."

As the butterfly fretted over what flower he wanted to visit, another butterfly landed lightly on my shoulder.

"I was wondering when you were going to come back," I smiled.

"You could say I've never left," the butterfly ventured.

"You haven't spoken to me in awhile," I said. "I've missed it."

"You haven't needed me," the butterfly said, gently brushing against my cheek. "Not like he does now."

"Do you only come when you're needed?" I asked. "What other reason is there?" the butterfly asked. "Fun, companionship, conversation," I listed. "At times," the butterfly allowed. "At times I do. Now that it's summer, it's much easier."

"Easier to do what?" I asked. The confused butterfly bumped into my elbow. "Excuse me," he asked politely. "I can not find my pink flower."

"Why don't you try a yellow or white flower?" I asked. "I don't see any pink ones."

"Because I want pink," the butterfly said patiently. "I was sure it was here."

"It's not," I said. "Why not try a white flower? You may like it."

"No, thank you," the visibly confused butterfly said as it continued to wind between my legs.

The butterfly and I continued to watch his friend bumble about through the grass, excusing himself to other insects and the cement curb as he bumped into them.

"Why is he so confused?" I asked. "He seems like he's having a lot of trouble. Why doesn't he just go to the white flower? Why the pink?"

"Why indeed?" the butterfly asked, touching my face gently with his wings. "Why does one strive for something, even when others tell him another option is better? You could ask yourself the same thing."

"That's different," I said. "Is it?" the butterfly asked pointedly. "How is it different when you strive for something and others tell you to settle for something else?"

He brushed by my eyelids, causing them to quiver like his own wings. "No one can be happy if they spend their time chasing something they don't want. And he wants a pink flower."

Nodding my head, I bent down by the bumbling butterfly who was muttering to himself. "I'll help you find a pink flower," I told him as he crawled onto a pale white flower. "There may be some up front."

"No thank you," the butterfly said happily as he began to drink. "I found one after all!"

I stared at him, quite confused. "This is a white flower," I said. "You wanted pink."

"And I found pink," the butterfly said cheerfully. "I told you it was around here."

"But this is white," I said, struggling to explain it to him. "This is a white flower." The butterfly looked down at the glaring white petals and shrugged. "Looks pink to me!" He began to drink in the nectar joyfully. As I stared dumbfounded, the second butterfly landed on my other shoulder.

"Sometimes," he said, "White is pink after all." Before I could protest, he took flight into the clear blue sky until I could no longer see him. Smiling to myself, I went back inside. Perhaps many things aren't always what they seem.