“Butterflies in my Stomach” used with permission from Steven C Gilberts. www.stevengilberts.com

I am but a butterfly
who was trained to believe that I am an ox-
or rather that I must be an ox to be loved.
So, I have carried many creatures on my back
across raging waters without thought
to the frailty of my own back or wings.

It wasn’t long before I found myself
near drowning, in a state of panic.
I sat by the side of the river for a while
and let my wings dry as I gasped for air;
I was grateful for the ones
who saw me in the water and plucked me out.
This gave me a vision of the creatures
and the hell I sought to save them from.

I saw the river was only raging
where people thrashed in fear
while yelling at me for being able to fly,
instead of putting their able feet down
to walk across the shallow waters themselves.

And now, I still have to keep reminding myself:
I am but a butterfly, and I am allowed to fly.