154. “Just living is not enough,” said the butterfly, “one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” ~Hans Christian Andersen

Bees sip honey from flowers
and hum their thanks when they leave.
The gaudy butterfly is sure that
the flowers owe thanks to him.
~Rabindranath Tagore

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Could there be a more mesmerizing or glamorous creature than the butterfly?  No matter where I am or what I’m doing, the winged beauties stop me in my tracks.  Envious of their dance and fascinated by the way they feed, I watch in awe as they gracefully float from one flower to another.  On this particular trip to our local Botanic gardens, I was thrilled to get a pretty good shot of a swallowtail in flight.  As you can see, butterflies are beautiful even when their likenesses are blurred.  Butterflies, often described as self-propelled or flying flowers, have long been venerated all over the world.  We see a variety of artistic depictions of them in many cultures, including the 3500-year-old ones on Egyptian hieroglyphs.  They are also the darlings that inspired the images of “butterfly fairies” both in art and as fictional characters in stories.  They have been used as well as symbols of God’s favor, good luck, the human soul, love, and rebirth.  Simply put, they are to the world of insects what the rose is in the world of flowers–incomparably beautiful.

How sweet are Your words (Lord) to my taste, sweeter than honey in my mouth.  ~Psalm 119:103  ✝