The Spring in a fairy tale

Posted by: Maria Atalanti

Published on: 17/04/2022

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It was Spring. Early in the morning. In the secret garden, the flowers had raised their heads to welcome the sun. Drops of dew hung from their petals and they let their aroma diffuse into the atmosphere.

A butterfly with yellow wings, blue and red dots, cheerfully tossed from one flower to another, kissed them, blinking with grace her wings. As she sat on a red rose, drinking its aroma, a bee arrived and began to suck the nectar.

-Good morning said the little butterfly. My name is Iris, what is yours?

The bee looked at her in amazement. She was busy, she did not have time to talk. But, she thought, she should answer out of politeness:

-I’m the bee number 18 she replied. I work for my hive, and I can’t stay for long.

-Stay for a while, to know each other, Iris told her. See what a beautiful day it is!

-I am busy, replied, the bee number 18. I am a worker in the hive near the forest and I have been sent to find where there are enough flowers to collect pollen and nectar for our hive. We must feed our queen and the eggs she gave birth to, today. Every day she lays 1500 eggs. So, you can understand how busy I am.

-Oh, oh, said the butterfly. I don’t want to delay you. I will follow you and speak as we harvest together pollen and nectar from the flowers; Tell me about you please!

The bee was somewhat flattered that the butterfly, named Iris, wanted to know about her. So, they started flying together and sharing the pollen of the flowers.

-We, the bees, live in groups. We are very well organized. We have our queen, the one who lays the eggs that I was telling you about, we have the drones, which are, let’s say, the men of our house and the rest of us, are the workers. We do all the work and protect our hive from whoever wanted to do us harm.

-The drones, the men of your house, what do they do? Don’t they protect you from enemies?

-Oh, no, there is only one job, they know how to do. To fertilize the queen, so that she can lay eggs. Then they die. Their role ends here. They don’t even have a stinger to fight. They do not even know how to collect nectar. We feed them during their lives.

-What are the chores you do, except of course to collect nectar and pollen from the flowers?

-We take care of the brood, that is the eggs, we clean the hive, we build cells for the new bees to grow inside, we serve the queen, we store the honey, which is our food and as I have told you, we are also the guards of the hive. At the same time, we feed the drones and prepare the royal jelly for our queen. This is a very strong food, which ensures the robustness of our queen and our hive. Of course, we also contribute to the maintenance of a healthy ecosystem on the planet, with the pollination of plants. We transfer with our feet the pollen, from one plant to another and so they are fertilized and multiply. In recent years, however, people, with the pesticides they use, have been killing us and are in danger of destroying life on Earth itself.

-We also contribute to the preservation of the ecosystem, said proudly the little butterfly, who was called Iris. We also carry with our feet the pollen from one plant to another.

The bee, number 18, looked at her somewhat disapprovingly. Then she asked?

-You, as far as I know, do not live in organized societies. Do you have a purpose in life?

The little butterfly was somewhat offended, but responded in the same cheerful tone:

-Our life begins when our mother lays her eggs on a leaf. From these eggs will be born caterpillars, which after ripening will make a cocoon around their body and will be closed inside. They will thus be transformed into chrysalis. When the time comes, they will pierce the cocoon and fly into the world in the form of butterflies. We may not live in organized societies but see how much beauty we decorate the world with! Then the evolution of our lives is a miracle of nature. Don’t you think?

-I don’t know. We believe in organizing and having a purpose in our lives. We have no personal opinions; we do not fly unnecessarily. We have goals.

-I don’t disagree, said the little butterfly, who was called Iris. But have you never felt the need to fly carefree, to play with flowers, to chase a sunray?

-None of this makes sense to me. My life is organized and militant. Leave me now because I will have to make some calculations.

-What do you mean? The little butterfly asked.

-I didn’t come here just to harvest nectar and pollen by my self. I came to calculate how many bees need to come to get all the nectar and pollen that are present in this garden.

-Suddenly the bee, with the number 18, began to dance. She was performing a strange dance. The little butterfly stared at her with amazement.

-Don’t be surprised, the rose, who spoke for the first time. told her. She communicates with her hive to send another 10 bees to harvest all the flowers of this garden.

-And how does she do that? The little butterfly asked.

-Another miracle of nature, replied, the rose. Nobody knows how. But it happens all the time. In the same way, it is a miracle of nature that you, from a caterpillar, transform into such a beautiful butterfly.

Not much time have passed, and ten more bees arrived in the garden and began to harvest the flowers. When they finished, they all set off for their hive.

The bee with the number 18, stood for a while and spoke to the butterfly called Iris:

-Did you see how we operate? All together for our society and our hive. Goodbye! Maybe I see you again.

-Goodbye, replied, the little butterfly.

She was puzzled for a while. Was her own life empty of content? The rose, that understood her thoughts, spoke wisely, and said to her:

-Don’t worry little butterfly. That’s how the world is made. Everyone has their role in this life. Your own role, apart from helping to pollinate the plants, is to embellish the creation. Do you think this is nothing? Now we live in this nice garden, and we think that everywhere there is beauty. That is not the case, however. There are wars,  there are deseases, there is asceticism, there is pain. And to a large extent, indeed. You, with your light flight and the brilliance of your form, can illuminate an unhappy being. Even for those few seconds you fly in front of them.

-The bee has another role. And she performs it perfectly, thanks to her discipline and her organized life. But who knows? Perhaps, at times, she is jealous of your carefreeness and charm.

The little butterfly that was called Iris, after thanking the rose, began to fly along with a white butterfly. They made flights from one flower to another and sucked their nectar. A kitten looked at them enchanted and spread his leg to catch them. But they eluded him with speed. The flowers, who watched the scene, laughed. The sunrays were also trying to take part in this chase, illuminating the beautiful wings of the butterflies, which shone.

This was happening in the little secret garden, this spring. But the flowers had also bloomed where there was a war. They emerged under the rubble and behind the machine guns. The rays of the sun, bathed with the same grace flowers and destruction. Butterflies flew playfully in front of the soldiers.

Spring blooms everywhere.


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2 responses to “The Spring in a fairy tale”

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