A Butterfly Flaps Its Wings



I hope the recent storms have been kind to you. We’ve had some minor tree damage here at the CowChows but nothing serious. I was out back a while ago cleaning up some of the broken limbs when I felt a little tickle on my forearm. I looked down to see a beautiful yellow butterfly sitting there. I raised my arm to get a better look, and as I brought him close he looked up sheepishly and said, “Sorry about your trees.”

“Excuse me,” I said.

He blinked and said, “Just wanted to say sorry about your trees. I was in South America a while back and well, I flapped my wings.”

I shook my head but it didn’t help. “What does that mean,” I asked, “you flapped your wings?”

He shrugged his tiny shoulders and said, “I landed on this flower and when I saw all the nectar was gone I flew away in a huff, and I probably flapped my wings harder than I should have. When I got back here I heard about this storm and thought I should apologize. So again, sorry about your trees.”

Still struggling to understand I said, “So, you think that when you flapped your wings in South America you somehow caused the storm half way around the world that broke my trees?”

“Haven’t you heard?” he said. “It’s all connected. Every breath we take, every move we make causes ripples in the fabric of all that is. Every thought and every deed has its own cause and effect that impacts everything and everybody. It’s all connected, man.”

“But,” I said, “you can’t possibly believe that you’re somehow responsible for everything that happens because everything is connected, can you?”

“Whatever,” he said in disgust. “You are so out of it.” He flicked his proboscis at me and gave his lacy wings a mighty flap. I stood and watched him fly away and as he grew too small to see I heard far off behind me, the distant roll of thunder.

Cordially yours,

Tim Couch