Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The True Story of a Boy and a Dragonfly

This is an old poem of an even older event. For me, it is a reminder to be open to any invitation that life offers. Sometimes the wondrous unfolds out of the mundane, and sometimes the child is more open than the adult in accepting invitations to wonder.


It’s a childhood memory,
Somehow vivid as trips to grandma’s house
And family dinners on Sunday.
A dragonfly --
That ancient creature of iridescent beauty
Precise as a finely tuned machine
Swift as any fairy --
Greeted me in the back yard.
She hovered for a moment
Then darted to the hillside.
Returning to me,
She hovered again
Then darted back to the hillside.

“I’ll follow that dragonfly,” I said.
She floated along just in front of me,
Allowing for my five-year-old steps,
She followed the path up the hill
And around the bend.
We reached a plateau
Just past the pine tree
Just beyond sight of our back porch.
There, to my surprise,
Was a host of dragonflies.
It looked like some important dragonfly meeting place.
They were flying about in a great circle
Like a living, vibrant wheel,
Like some shimmering vortex
Connecting this world and the next.

She flew on ahead of me and joined the circle.
I stood astounded.
I couldn’t stay long.
It was a dragonfly meeting, you know.

                                                      ~ CK

Image: Illustration from "The Water-Babies, A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby" by Charles Kingsley,
           illustrated by Warwick Goble
          Public Domain
          Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons


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