THE BUTTERFLY DID FLUTTER BY
Once upon a time, she wanted nothing more.
1. ONCE UPON A TIME
Once upon a time, she wanted nothing more than to read. Once upon a time, of course, there was nothing else she wanted to do, but to laze in bed all day, reading books. What good are dolls or toys or clothes or boys when you had books, books, books where you could escape into worlds of talking animals and super heroes and kids being superheroes by turning into animals? There was nothing better than cocooning herself in her blanket with a book in hand, or curling up on her father’s armchair with her mother’s pillow and two books (in case she was done with one). Hours passed, and she would scarcely move. Compared to this, the real world paled and faltered; compared to this, the real world was paltry.
2. NEXT UPON A TIME
Next upon a time, she realised that her love of books had grown in her a hatred of books. She had read good books, and the better books, and soon she had read even some of the very best books. And compared to some of the books she’d read, most of the rest of the books paled and faltered, paltry. What next? And so she shed her cocoon of her child’s blanket (now barely big enough to cover even her feet) and spread her wings. Well-read, witty, and bursting with a wanderlust for the world her literary adventures had incited in her, she emerged - and was magnificent. Splendid. A social butterfly, touched with magic dust.
She flapped her wings, and brewed hot water and a storm.
3. THE BUTTERFLY DID FLUTTER BY
Things moved in cycles; this was something she knew - like fashion, like revolutions, like policy reversals and economic models. Omnia mutantur, nihil interit, ran the line of one of her favourite Graphic Novels -all things change, nothing is lost.
Everything about her had changed. She felt like her eyes were opened, and she could finally see; she felt like her wings were dry, and she could finally spread them and fly; she felt like her world had opened up, a beautiful butterfly emerging from an ugly, unappealing husk, beautiful and lustrous and red, to greet her.
Omnia mutantur, nihil interit. So why did it feel like she had lost everything, and nothing was spared? As her world grew bigger she felt smaller and smaller; as things grew brighter and more beautiful she found herself seeing less, admiring less; as she flew further, and further away all she wanted was to go back, go back, go back to the home and the hearth and the huge leathery armchair of her fathers and the cushions of her mother, and the blanket that would cover her and hold her and keep her warm and safe and the book, a silly, stupid book, that would at least entertain her and keep her happy without giving her grief, and without ever the threat of emotional betrayal, breakdown, or hurt?
Why did it feel like she ran out of stardust, and was now only looking for somewhere to crawl back in again?
Once upon a time, and this time the second, she wanted - she wants - nothing more, no more..
THE BUTTERFLY DID FLUTTER BY