September 19, 2007

The Lord and the Butterfly

The clouds threatened overhead as we stepped gingerly over overgrown vegetation crowding the narrow mud path. I worried of snakes lurking in the bush proliferating the earth in that remote corner of history not far from the raging seas. Village folk, whom we had left behind on our way to the ruins, had warned us of their presence in the undergrowth. I said a silent prayer for the both of us and stepped carefully, camera in hand and alert to any movement in the bush now only centimeters from my feet. Just as suddenly as we had hit upon the undergrowth we now came upon a clearing by an old well and Lo!

Nailed to the tree his gentle presence beckoned. Behind the frame an ancient window lay open, surrounded by vegetation rising up the forlorn walls.

Later returning the way we had come I stopped by a plant by the side of the path to photograph a butterfly who had only just floated to where I was, and in the time it took me to pause my step and let the shutter land I noticed in the corner of my eye a movement only a few feet away from where I stood bent at my waist. Turning my face I caught sight of a long snake emerging from the bush before slithering across the narrow path, into the bush on the opposite side, barely four steps from where I had paused to watch the butterfly who had settled on the stem just then. Seconds ticked by before the reptile disappeared into the bush and I exhaled slowly to calm my nerves. As I stepped forward I was reminded, strangely if I may say so, of a poem by an unknown author I had read many years ago.

The man whispered, “God, speak to me”
And a meadowlark sang.

But, the man did not hear
So the man yelled “God, speak to me!”
And, the thunder rolled across the sky.

But, the man did not listen.

The man looked around and said,
“God, let me see you”
And a star shined brightly.
But the man did not notice.

And the man shouted,
“God, show me a miracle!”
And a life was born.
But, the man did not know.

So, the man cried out in despair,
“Touch me God and let me know you are here!”

Whereupon, God reached down and touched the man.

But, the man brushed the Butterfly away and walked on.

I’m glad I paused by the Butterfly who had floated to where I was . . . . just in time, only just.

This was the one.


bluemountainmama said...

"When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?" (Psalm 8:3-4).

Someone was mindful of you, Anil....

Charu said...

this one is lovely - god is in the small things of life! where was this? your post also reminded me of this other thing I have read about two sets of footprints on the sand - read it anywhere?

anan said...

its a lovely motivational post---to uplift our spirit---anytime,anywhere...we are not alone

backpakker said...

Very relevant post in todays world where we forget man, god, nature, beauty and only think of power and one upmanship.I have read the parable of the two sets of footprints that Charu refers to and it gives us a sense of comfort that we are not alone ...Also reminds me of my school hymns , especially- "All things bright and beautiful..."

Shantanu said...

Great post! :-)

kenju said...

How beautiful!

Seamus said...

I, too, have read this poem long ago and I so needed to be reminded of it right now! Thank you! :)

Anil P said...

Bluemountainmama: Yes, somebody as :)

Charu: Thanks. Yes, I've read it. The first time I read it was at a doctor's years ago.

Anan: Thanks, we never were alone.

Backpakker: At times self sufficiency as well as the striving for self sufficiency together account for one-upmanship.

Shantanu: Thanks.

Kenju: Thank you.

Seamus: You're welcome, thanks :)

Ms.N said...

very beautiful - the poem, the post and the photo.

Anil P said...

Ms. N: Thank you.