Marion Hayden is our school counsellor and now an award-winning author!
Through her eyelids she could see the shifting light as the passing clouds made their slow and steady pilgrimage across the sky, caressing the sun and moving on. She sighed and rolled on to her side, shifting her weight to rest her head on her hands, pillowing her cheek. Her hair fell in waves across her face but she did not move to pull the strands back behind her ears, it felt good to have that curtain, that protection. Keeping her eyes closed, she felt the grass against her forehead and her pillowed hands, wet with the lasting drops of the passing afternoon shower. There was something she loved about the feel of the sun across her face after the rain, a sense that nothing was ever constant, that we move and change, moment to moment.
She opened her eyes slowly and surveyed the world around her through the curtain of hair. She could see the blades of grass, and the wildflowers, tall enough to reach her knees, greeting her, twinkling in the moisture and diamonds of the sunlight. Small white butterflies flitted around her motionless body, moving in time with the gentle breeze. Keeping her hands pillowed under her face, she exhaled a sharp breath to move the hair obscuring her view. Puffing out a small amount of air, her hair only moved a fraction, which continued to cover her eyes. With another sigh, she hooked the rebellious hair behind her exposed ear and returned her hand to cushion her cheek, warm now from the heat of the sun. The hill she lay on dipped down into the lower part of the garden, the yellow daisies proud and tall, stretching until the rock wall of the garden’s perimeter.
“We shall never be mowed...” they whispered.
“Sure...” she thought, and smiled at the thought of talking daisies.
Rolling on to her back again, she threw her hands out on either side of her body and ran her fingers through the grass. A passing cloud threw the garden into muted shadow and the diamonds stopped twinkling, the daisies quieted and the world held its breath. She too stopped breathing until the slow emergence of the sun and the warmth upon her bare skin again.
“There is such a reliance on the light...” she thought to herself “...a guide when the dark is at its peak and we are blind to find our way....but,” she mused “we can only know the light exists and its place in this world because we know the dark...” With that, she shaded her hand against her eyes from the re- emergence of the sunlight. She frowned and thought about her own personal dark, her worries and fears. They seemed to overshadow the light within her and she wished she could let them pass like the clouds above, letting the sunshine in more often than not. Life was never easy it seems.
“Life...” she murmured and sighed, wiggling her toes in the grass, closing her eyes...
“Yes, life...” returned a small voice. She snapped her eyes open and sat up quickly, resting her body on her elbows behind her and looking around her for the source of the small confident voice. The garden continued to be empty, save the wildflowers, daisies, and increasing number of small white butterflies. She held her breath again and waited to hear the voice a second time, eyes wide and ears open to any sound.
“Hello?” she asked tentatively...
“Hello!” the voice replied and she started suddenly with the close proximity of the sound. With no one else present in the garden, and only the slight breeze to move the ever growing wildflowers she mumbled to herself “ I must be losing my mind ...”
“Oh no, “the voice replied, “far from it!
“Who are you?” she exclaimed, drawing her knees to her chest and looking around her wildly.
“Why, I am just a butterfly,” the voice responded seriously. “A....a buttefly?” she asked incredulously.
“Of course, every great garden has butterflies!” the voice cried “we are, of course, the keepers of the sunlight dance.”
“The what?” the girl asked, eyes still wide in confusion
“The sunlight dance,” the butterfly answered patiently. With this information she surveyed two small white butterflies dance across her vision and she questioned her sanity.
“Butterflies...” she thought and watched them flit about the wildflowers. After a moment the voice continued,
“The sunlight dance is when the rain has ceased and the sunlight returns to caress the life around us! It is the dark and the light, the clouds and the sun, the way we continue, on and on...”
“I see.” she whispered, still confused.
“Do not worry yourself with the business of butterflies, “ the voice said with a dismissive tone, “but we do have advice for you, you of the lounging of the garden type...”
“Lounging of the garden type?!” she said defensively, “I was only taking a five minute...”
“No matter!” the unseen butterfly interrupted, five suddenly flitting by her vision, “but we must give you guidance, we have agreed, since watching you.”
“Ok....” She responded in a suspicious voice.
“You think too much,” the butterfly explained “let it go.”
“Let what go?” she asked incredulously.
“It! Everything....do not be plagued by life’s worries, fears or unknown....just be. Let go! As the daisies say “we will not be mowed!””
“They actually say that?” she asked in bewilderment.
“Of course!” the voice said “it is their mantra, their everyday look at life! To be thought as to be cut down each day, would they live as they do?”
“I guess not...” she answered tentatively, looking around herself warily.
“Exactly! You think too much, just be. Enjoy the light that comes after the rain as you have already experienced, the kiss of the warmth with the passing of clouds, for this! Is life.”
With that, the already now accumulated 10 butterflies dispensed amongst the garden and she was for a moment awestruck with what had occurred.
“Hello?” she said quietly “are you still there?”
The quiet was both curious and pleasant, and she strained her ears to hear the small confident voice return, but no one, human or butterfly responded. After a few minutes of listening and watching the twinkling sunlight of the garden, she slowly lowered herself on to her back and thought
“Well, I guess I just have to “be”...” and she smiled to herself in the sunlight of a magical knowing “...because the butterflies said so.”
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