“Come quick!” my daughter exclaimed as she threw open the back door. “There’s a monarch butterfly on the driveway!”I grabbed my camera and ran out.Resting so very still at first, soft wings shut tight, the creature could have been at the beginning of its life, or the end.Then those wings slowly opened, full-color beauty spread flat against dull concrete.She moved slowly, carefully, leaning slightly to one side as if inebriated.Free of blemishes, so perfectly formed, I soon realized she was a new creation simply finding her legs and working her wings.Wobbly, stepping lightly on thread-thin legs, she crept up my finger.She lingered on my soft perch for a long time, straight and stiff. Then, wings pressed downward, body curved out, stretching, she prepared for flight.Poised, pondering, planning for takeoff…And then, she was gone.
Tell me, what is it you plan to doWith your one wild and precious life?(Mary Oliver, from “The Summer Day“)
[L]et me know how fleeting is my life…Each man’s life is but a breath.(Psalm 39: 4b, 5)
Megan Willome says
I was already hooked, and then you ended with one of my favorite Mary Oliver poems?! Wow.
And “I Launched a Monarch” could be a great book title.
Maybe the title of a memoir?
But I don’t have any memoir in the works, other than what I may tap out in short posts here.
the joyful potter says
Oh, what gorgeous, gorgeous photos! I’ve been studying butterflies for almost a year with my three daughters, and just days ago we watched a beautiful NOVA special on their migratory habits.
What do I want to do with my “one wild and precious life”? Love well, and not worry overmuch about the failings.
Thank you for the compliment! She held so still because she was so new, I got lots of attempts to get a good, focused shot.
Love well and don’t worry so much. Very good way to live your wild and precious life!
Janis@Open My Ears Lord says
Oh, Ann, you know how enamored I am with butterflies and capturing them on camera. Your photos are exquisite–and the time you had to hold the butterfly and watch it get ready for flight is beyond precious! Such a blessing! Thank you for this joy in my email today.
I finally got one flitting around our fiery colored Mexican Bird of Paradise. The Lord gave me a great photo of one–and I’m planning to post it next weekend.
Thank you, Janis, for your comment. I agree–these creatures are meaningful in so many ways, for their actual beauty and for their symbolism, too.
Diana Trautwein says
Gorgeous. That’s all – just gorgeous. Every photo, every word. Thank you.
Thank you, Diana. Thank you so much.
Hazel I Moon says
It is excellent that you have observant daughters who know just you would like to see! Amazing that you caught little one on camera as she was preparing for life. Me, I will keep on doing what I am doing now, and continue to take it daily one step at a time.
I was so happy she called me out that morning to see the beauty!
You are living your one wild and precious life with great love.
This post is beautiful, especially the words.
Kyleen, thank you.
Duane Scott says
This post has been sitting in my inbox for awhile and I’ve been waiting for time to stop by and tell you that I loved it.
Thank you, friend. Thank you so much.
Lovely, lovely photos and story.
What a blessing to be there for the beginning of a new butterfly.
It was, Carla; an unexpected treat.