Insects in Poetry: Rise Like Butterflies: A Poem for Today

Updated on June 2, 2019
Tim Truzy info4u profile image

Tim Truzy is a poet, short-story author, and he is currently working on several novels.

(Tiger Swallowtails) Watching butterflies can remind us of our innocence.
(Tiger Swallowtails) Watching butterflies can remind us of our innocence. | Source

Getting Butterflies

I enjoy watching butterflies when they come my way. It’s a springtime blessing. They flit and flirt about, finding nectar and putting on a spectacular display of colors. As a child, I would chase them through my parents’ garden and sit and marvel at them in the meadow near our house. Occasionally, I would manage to hold one for a few moments. I was always nervous, but the butterflies in my hand ran off those butterflies in my stomach.

Today, I can still experience the serenity brought on by the presence of these gorgeous creatures. Near my home there is a collection of butterflies brought from across the world. At the N.C. Life and Science Museum in Durham, nothing is more pleasurable than watching these insects as they speed from plant to plant or lazily go about their business. We have been there when the museum workers released new residence at the butterfly house, and the children near us were ecstatic, much like I used to be. I applauded when a few children were able to convince some of the butterflies to land on their shoulders or even in their hands. Indeed, butterflies inspire feelings of freedom, calmness, and innocence with their roaming.

Below is a poem dedicated to these fantastic creatures. However, I also dedicate this poem to the poet and caring soul, Dr. S. Gorski, who joined us at the butterfly house and has extensive knowledge about these insects. As always, Lori did a spectacular job with the photos. May we all “Rise like Butterflies!”

Poll

Have you ever held butterflies?

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(Painted Lady) Butterflies are fascinating and fun to observe.
(Painted Lady) Butterflies are fascinating and fun to observe. | Source

Rise Like Butterflies!

Butterfly flapped feeding on fragile flower,

Stalling skyward flight from nectar’s Heaven,

A peace esoteric to those with wings,

My arms upward lifted in tautology.

Diminutive dreams driving delusions,

Circumlocution express desires,

Overruled biological verdict,

Standing feet taking me only higher.

Graveyard men marching respectfully by.

Garden cemetery harvesting bodies,

Gargantuan pasquinade my expense,

Gauche scion of air owes no apologies.


Monarchs gone royalty in flight no more,

Nibble flowers digest wild wind with wings,

Swallowtails prancing glorious gentle breeze,

My hands holding tremble upon these things.

Painted ladies colors’ still tingling,

Swooping, flitting, floating aloft and aloof,

Alarming soft beauty swirling away,

Caterpillars returning confirm truth.

Monarchs compete with other creatures, such as humans, for natural habitat.
Monarchs compete with other creatures, such as humans, for natural habitat. | Source

Palm massaged by your floating soft tickle,

Emperor of empathy extricate,

Tremendous transcendent Empyrean,

Curve raised replace rains cloudless sulphur.

Worries glide effortlessly through your view,

Melancholy flutters to distant meadow,

Sadness seeks sacrificial altar,

And I rise with monarchs to see His Home.

Tiny blue active with life bowdlerize,

Short time to dine and mate before moments gone,

Lugubrious in my meditations,

Like your brief stay can I fly to meet dawn?

Give me the silver of iridescence,

On fritillary happy butterfly,

Venturing the globe and across country,

Telling troubles season is now denied.

Let Mercy be my nectar and passion,

Drinking from a blooming morning glory,

Let Gentleness be my fragrant flower,

Rising aware beautiful butterflies.

(Palomedes Swallowtail) Butterflies can teach us a lot about enjoying life.
(Palomedes Swallowtail) Butterflies can teach us a lot about enjoying life. | Source

Poll

What is your favorite type of butterfly?

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(Cloudless Sulphur) Butterflies are interesting insects for many reasons.
(Cloudless Sulphur) Butterflies are interesting insects for many reasons. | Source

Fun Facts About Butterflies

Butterflies are truly fascinating. Although they are prey, a butterfly can camouflage itself by folding its wings. In fact, the scales on the wings reflect sunlight, but the butterfly wings are transparent when the scales are lost as the insect ages. In addition, butterflies live on liquids as adults with nectar being their primary food source. Yet, these insects’ taste receptors are on their feet. Because butterflies are cold-blooded, they require temperatures above 80 degrees Fahrenheit to fly.

However, a butterfly’s life is short. Most of these insects live two to four weeks. The blues live only a few days, but the monarchs may thrive for nine months. As you explore these wondrous insects, I’ve provided some information about the butterflies seen in the photos in this article in order for you to enjoy knowledge about them for a lifetime:

  • Fritillary: These butterflies prefer violets for food. They share their name with a flower, possibly because of the characteristic checkered pattern on both. The name “fritillary” is used to describe several butterfly groups, such as the Gulf fritillary. Another group is known as the great spangled fritillary. Regardless of the different names, these insects can be found in fields, valleys, and even on mountains. They like moist and warm locations. These butterflies are quite plentiful across North America and planet Earth.
  • Monarch Butterfly: This beautiful insect is known for yearly migrations from the United States and Canada down to Mexico. Other common names for the monarch butterfly include: milkweed, black veined brown, wanderer, and common tiger. Although the monarch population has declined, the butterfly is not currently listed as endangered. Yet, scientific estimates indicate approximately 225 million are needed to stabilize the population of these insects. The monarch butterfly is recognized as a useful pollinator; but much of the insects' habitat has been loss due to herbicides. However, the monarch butterfly has been bred aboard the International Space Station.

  • Painted Lady: The painted lady is seen across the globe, except for a few places. It is frequently called the “cosmopolitan butterfly” because of its ubiquitous nature. The painted lady butterfly is part of a family of insects known as “brush foot” butterflies. These colorful insects dine on any number of fruits and vegetables, including oranges, okra, and water melons. During migration, painted lady butterflies can travel about 100 miles a day with maximum speeds of about 30 mph.
  • Swallowtail: The swallowtail butterflies are generally large. They may feed on a variety of plant life, including citrus blossoms. There are over 500 species of swallow tails with names such as: spicebush, black, and birdwing. The swallowtail butterflies are found around the world except for in the extreme northern and southern portions of the globe.

  • Cloudless sulphur: This butterfly is originally from Argentina, but it can be found throughout the southern U.S. During warmer seasons, many of these butterflies are scattered from Texas through North and South Carolina. This insect lays cream colored eggs which change to orange later. As a fully developed adult, the cloudless sulphur is yellow in color. The host for the cloudless sulphur is the pea plant or similar poisonous plants. This insect prefers environments such as parks, woodlands, and yards.

References

Gulf fritillary. (2019, May 13). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_fritillary#Geographic_range

Monarch butterfly. (2019, May 07). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monarch_butterfly#Habitat_loss_due_to_herbicide_use

Swallowtail butterfly. (2018, December 26). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swallowtail_butterfly#In_culture

Comments

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  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    3 weeks ago from U.S.A.

    On cool days, in a colony, butterflies can be seen climbing, trying to find warmth. As it cooled here, our butterflies took off further south. Those that stay become larvae until spring or die. Beautiful and mysterious. Thanks for visiting.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    4 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thank you, Chitrangada Sharan . May your day be peaceful. Respect and admiration

  • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

    Chitrangada Sharan 

    4 months ago from New Delhi, India

    Very nice article and poem, with butterfly as the theme.

    Loved your butterfly pictures. Butterflies are beautiful creatures, in all the vibrant and lovely colours. Looking at your fun facts, I wasn’t aware of these beautiful names. Thank You for the information and thanks for sharing this excellent poem.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    We just returned from visiting the western part of our state. Sitting on one of our recently planted coneflowers, a swallowtail greeted us when we arrived. It even allowed a quick photo session. Then, it lazily said good-bye. I love it when they visit. Thanks for reading.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Today, we went outside and saw several butterflies gathered on our flowers. They were swallowtails, and they were beautiful. Thanks for reading. Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thanks, Nell. The red admirals sound interesting, and I will look them up. As always, to a kind writer,

    Admiration,

    Tim

  • Nell Rose profile image

    Nell Rose 

    5 months ago from England

    That was beautiful Tim! I loved the poem, butterflys are my favorite. I love them. over here we have Red Admirals, they are gorgeous.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thank you, Genna. Your comment means a lot to me. I suppose the butterflies helped with this. I love poetry about nature, much like you do. To a talented, supportive, and kind writer/poet, respect and admiration, Tim

  • Genna East profile image

    Genna East 

    5 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

    Butterflies are among my favorite gifts of nature, Tim. So I was delighted to read this article and your stirring poetry. I especially liked these lines:

    "My hands holding tremble upon these things.

    Painted ladies colors’ still tingling,

    Swooping, flitting, floating aloft and aloof,

    Alarming soft beauty swirling away,

    Caterpillars returning confirm truth."

    Beautifully done! :-)

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thanks, Mark. I appreciate your thoughtful and kind comment. Sincerely, Tim

  • Mark Tulin profile image

    Mark Tulin 

    5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

    I’ve seen the Monarch’s migrate. It’s an awesome experience. Enjoyed your appreciation for the butterfly. Truly an amazing insect.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Hi, Lora, I did receive your comment. I guess right now my system is a bit weird. But thanks for the kind and thoughtful comment. May we rise and enjoy life like those graceful butterflies. Respectfully, Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thanks, Mary. I truly enjoyed writing this one. Respectfully, Tim

  • aesta1 profile image

    Mary Norton 

    5 months ago from Ontario, Canada

    I learned interesting facts about butterflies from your hub at the same time enjoyed your poetry. What beautiful creatures they truly are.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    5 months ago from U.S.A.

    Hi, Ms. Dora, I've always been fond of the way these creatures remind us to take life only so seriously. My wife and I love their carefree spirit. Thanks for the kind and thoughtful comment. Respectfully, Tim

  • MsDora profile image

    Dora Weithers 

    6 months ago from The Caribbean

    Your poem made us connect with the butterfly so closely that we would learn to love them if we didn't love them before. Thanks also for the scientific facts you provided, making this article an excellent presentation in poetry and in nature.

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    6 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thanks, John. I appreciate your kind comment. Respectfully, Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    6 months ago from U.S.A.

    Hi, Pamela, we just put up a bird feeder. My wife and I love sitting on the porch swing and watching butterflies and birds as they drop by. Usually, we do that in the morning with a nice cup of coffee. Thanks for the kind comment. Respectfully, Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    6 months ago from U.S.A.

    Hello, Pam Morris. Living in Atlanta, you probably see a rich variety of these guys flying around. Lucky you. Thanks for the kind comment. Respectfully, Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    6 months ago from U.S.A.

    Hi, Eric. They do seem silly sometimes, but they do have a lot of love, for sure. I think life is too serious not to be silly for a few moments. Respectfully, Tim

  • Tim Truzy info4u profile imageAUTHOR

    Tim Truzy 

    6 months ago from U.S.A.

    Thanks, Louise. I appreciate your comment. They can be fun to hold.

  • Jodah profile image

    John Hansen 

    6 months ago from Queensland Australia

    This is a wonderful article and poem, Tim. Great information about butterflies and the poem is a delight.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 

    6 months ago from Sunny Florida

    I have always enjoyed the butterflies, and I love having flowering bushes for them to visit. I have had a Monarch butterfly one my hand many years ago.

    I really enjoyed your article Tim, and the poem was beautiful. It is nice to read an article like this in this season as the different birds are visiting our feeder and the butterflies have arrived.

  • Pam Morris profile image

    Pam Morris 

    6 months ago from Atlanta Georgia

    Tim, I love reading your poems, your poetry is so elegantly and beautifully written. Butterflies are a beautiful creature, I also love watching them sit on the flowers in my mother flower bed. Thank you for sharing.

  • Ericdierker profile image

    Eric Dierker 

    6 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

    Tim it is just too hard sometimes. And I am in a bad mood. Beautiful wild daisies on my arm. How long can anyone sit perfectly still? We live down here border town way. It is ritual that I greet the Monarch and Swallowtail on their migration north.

    I reckon kind of silly. Hey they are too. How can a creature so small and dainty be so powerful in love.

    Excuse me back to (oops I can't remember what I was supposed to be doing)

    Oh well. They love my roses.

  • Coffeequeeen profile image

    Louise Powles 

    6 months ago from Norfolk, England

    That's interesting information about butterflies, and I love the poem. I love butterflies. They are so beautiful. I have held butterflies before, and it always makes me smile when I do. =)

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