And Suddenly Butterflies Everywhere


     ~ For Dewey Huston

Tell me again about the butterflies,
old friend of my father, bringer of tales,
the gully, mossy rocks of the streambed,
a cool breeze off the glacier high above,
and suddenly butterflies everywhere
as if the air you breathed were blossoming.

I've seen so many things, you said. I wish
I could write them down. And when my brother died
you were the alpinist and engineer
who had an explanation where he'd gone,
waving a hand in air. It's energy,
you said. That energy must still be somewhere.

Ah, but the real life is never written down,
and who could understand the butterflies--
that there were so many, so surprisingly?
Tell me again, old friend, and I will try
to catch the light, the flavor of the air
like moss, like distant ice, like clear water.

~ David Mason

Sarah Burns