Saturday, May 26, 2018

Bugs, Butterflies and a Cup of Tea

When i was three, I fell in a red anthill.
I still remember screaming,
the feeling of the ants crawling all over me,
and how long it took my mom to get them off.
I was afraid of bugs for years
after that.

In my thirties I became enamored with butterflies,
the bursting out of a cocoon and flying free
roughly equating the journey i had made.

The story goes a fly
fell into a young practitioner's tea
at the monastery.
He told the monk,
who hastened away with cup and fly
in consternation.
The young man assumed
the monk was embarrassed
and would return with fresh tea
and apologies.

When the monk came back, he  whispered
reassuringly: "the fly will be all right",
in that moment causing a cosmic shift
in the young man's Western mind.

For Kim's prompt at Real Toads: bugs.


  1. Oh how I love this! I imagine it did blow that western thinking mind. I AM so very glad the fly was alright.

  2. I just remembered encountering face to face, on my hands and knees in the garden a fat green THING with antennae and huge eyes looking like something from outer space. It freaked me out. Likely it felt the same way, lol.

  3. Maybe a demented overgrown grasshopper?
    It's bad news to be trapped with a biting or stinging insect. Having a bee in the car is about the worst. Ants in your shoes and inside ones clothes comes next.
    I was mortified by a friend's behavior at a restaurant early in life. We were having fried shrimp, fries and salad. And a milkshake. He was about finished with the shake and said to me, "Watch this." He had scooped up a fly and was putting it in his shake. After showing her the fly the waitress apologized and brought him a fresh milkshake.

  4. What a nightmare, Sherry, falling into a red anthill, especially at three years old! I'm glad you developed an interest in butterflies, despite your traumatic childhood experience. I love the story about the fly. My husband is a fly whisperer -he always manages to get them out of the window without harming them.

  5. The fly will be alright.. and so too, the world.

  6. 😊luv😊the😊cosmic shift Sherry


  7. A surprised goodness down the throat, yes, why not!


  8. Wow, Sherry- it'e certainly a cosmic shift for me!

  9. I'd bet that everyone's got at least one good bug story. You've treated us to a few. Thanks!

  10. I'm very careful not kill a bug... I help the spiders, wasps... but maybe not a fly (but a fresh cup of tea would be nice)

  11. I love that story of the fly and monk.

  12. And then there is Richard Brautigan who brushed a fly off his napkin so he could clean his glasses to watch the pretty girls!

  13. Yes, the fly will be alright! Loved your poem.

  14. Oh. It's never cool when something happens and you get the pain end of things - like red ants! Yowch! These memories can scar of years - but it's always worth noting, you can overcome fears and come to appreciate all the inherent beauty of other things, even the really odd ones .... I loved your comment about the face-to-face later on - LOL - like how often doesn't that just startle you, just when you think you're familiar with all the creatures and critters about?
    Loved the ending of the poem - about the Monk and the Fly!

  15. I like your poem, especially the ending.

  16. This was lovely -- especially the way ones relationship to the natural world and things alien to self can change.

  17. good twist, Sherry - and thought provoking~

  18. What is it about spiritual adulthood where we see the world not as a mirror but a vast and wonderful door? Well done.

  19. I love your telling of the story about the monk rescuing the fly in the teacup!

  20. Well done, Sherry! This is just totally charming.


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