Farewell To The Flowers This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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"Can I ask you something?" she said with her usual child-like curiosity.

"Sure," I answered pleasantly as I turned to look at her sweet, angelic face. She was looking down at her shoes or mine or that little scrap of purple paper on the floor. Then, in one fluid motion, the child looked up at me. She had the most gorgeous eyes. They were big and green with lashes so dark and thick that every time she blinked, it seemed like a thousand butterflies lost their step.

"How come ..." she paused as if trying to figure out how to say it best. "How come the snow is so quiet?"

"What do you mean," I asked, not quite sure what she wanted to know.

"When the rain falls, it makes a noise. Why doesn't snow make a sound?"

I looked out the window and sure enough the snow was falling silently to the waiting ground. It was so hushed and still when it snowed. How come? Hmmm. Good question. I started to wonder myself. I looked down at her expectant face and smiled. She smiled too and another cloud of butterflies caught their breath.

"Well ..." I began, not quite certain where I was headed with this sentence. "The snow is pure and peaceful." A thousand flakes dropped past the window as I took a breath. "It doesn't want to disturb anyone or anything. You know when you're sleeping and your mom comes in and gently places a blanket over you?"

She nodded in agreement and said, "So the snow is putting a blanket on the ground because the flowers are sleeping in winter and the snow doesn't want to wake them up."

"Exactly." I felt happy and accomplished as I turned away. I hadn't even thought of that. Flowers. How cute.

"What about the rain?" I heard her voice, pure and sweet, behind me.

I turned around and looked into those glossy green pools as another hundred butterflies stumbled in their flight.

"Well ..." I began as before. "When you want to wake yourself up, you splash water on your face, right? Well, it rains a lot in the springtime to wake up the ground."

"And the flowers?" she looked a bit frightened that perhaps the flowers had been forgotten.

"And the flowers," I confirmed. Satisfied that I had done my job, I turned away from her again with a smile.

"So ..." she continued with determination. "The rain wakes up the flowers for summer." Right. "But what about when the flowers go away in autumn and the leaves fall down?" she asked as if my theory was flawed.

"Well, you know how bright and pretty the leaves are when they fall, don't you?" I asked. She grinned and agreed by swinging her entire body. "It's sort of like a colorful parade to say farewell to the flowers for the winter."

She stared at me in amazement, and in those 30 seconds a million butterflies experienced a whirlwind. There really was no question about it. It couldn't be disputed. It had to be true. The world revolved around the sleeping patterns of flowers. How totally absurd and yet how completely brilliant.

"Wait a second. Who cleans up the mess after the parade?"

"The wind, of course."

She laughed and I laughed as a butterfly was born.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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Fayrouz This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Nov. 14, 2009 at 10:47 pm
LOVELY. Applause!I could totally picture this taking place. keep up the good work!
 
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