Take Flight #flashfiction

This week at the Carrot Ranch, Charli Mills challenged writers to In 99 words (no more, no less), write an escape. It can be daring or subtle. Who is escaping from what and why? Go where the prompt leads!

One of my favourite times of year as a teacher was springtime when we had a butterfly house in the classroom and watched the tiny caterpillars strip the plants of their leaves as they grew bigger and bigger on their journey to becoming butterflies. It was an almost magical experience to watch the caterpillars pupate and then, days later, emerge from their chrysalises as butterflies. I never tired of watching it and I was lucky to see it year after year while the children only got to see it when they were with me. (Though many came back to visit in following years, still mesmerised by the process.)

I am fascinated by metamorphosis. I view it as a hopeful process and consider it an analogy for our own ability to make change in our lives. It is also often used as an analogy for a transition that may occur, according to one’s belief, after death.

I often wonder what life must be like for the caterpillar, what occurs during metamorphosis, and the delight that must be felt when emerging as a butterfly. I have written many previous posts and flash fictions featuring butterflies but, as I said, I never tire of it. I hope you don’t either. Here’s my response to Charli’s prompt.

Take Flight

One day followed another — everyone in uniform, head down, following unwritten rules known by heart. Only Olive questioned, “Why?” She longed for adventure. Blue skies whispered promises on gentle breezes that rustled leaves and tantalised with sweet exotic perfumes. Her tastebuds rebelled. She couldn’t, wouldn’t, take another bite. She crawled into a shell and hoped to sleep for ever. Kaleidoscopic dreams flitted in a mash of memories and futuristic movie scenes. What was real and what imagined? She awoke renewed, seeing the world as if from other eyes. She unfurled her wings and flew to kiss the welcoming skies.

Thank you blog post

Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts.

45 thoughts on “Take Flight #flashfiction

  1. Jennie

    I enjoyed your flash, Nora! More importantly, I enjoyed your backstory. I remember how you and your children watched the magical metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly every year. It is a magical experience for children to see. There are many messages and lessons on so many levels.

    Liked by 1 person

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  2. Annika Perry

    Norah, terrific short story and you capture the moment of metamorphosis beautifully through the ‘Kaleidoscopic dreams’ and ahh … love the moment of ‘flew to kiss the welcoming skies.’ I never fail to be in awe of this miracle of nature!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
      1. Annika Perry

        Absolutely! Oddly enough though my first real experience regarding the word was Kafka’s book so to me it had very dark negative connotations … until I started looking a lot closer at the natural world!

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  3. Pingback: Escape « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  4. Charli Mills

    Metamorphosis is amazing to ponder. What do caterpillars dream as they transform? As an early childhood educator, Norah, I see you as someone who ushers the younglings into their transformation through education. Lovely flash!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply
    1. Norah Post author

      Thank you, Anne. I’m pleased it worked.
      May I ask? I found two comments exactly the same as this in spam. Did you attempt to send it three times, or has WP copied it? I think a similar thing happened with a previous comment too.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. Anne Goodwin's next novel is out May 29th

        Yes, that was me. I don’t know why but WP often rejects my comments. Usually I remember to copy it and can retry, but then it refuses it as a duplicate. So I repaste with a . in front of it, and often that gets through. Took a double . this time. It doesn’t happen only on your site, but if I know you regularly check spam, I’ll just wait to be rescued.

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        1. Norah Post author

          I’m both disappointed and pleased it’s not just my site, Anne. Funny how it works with the full stop. I wonder what the issue is with WP. I wonder if Hugh would know. He writes a lot of WP tips.
          You are too kind to me about the spam, though. Most days there’s is way too much of it and I just empty it. It takes too long to wade through. Sorry if I’ve deleted any of your comments.

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                1. Norah Post author

                  It must be frustrating for you. I know I’m not as persistent as you. I should make an effort on your blog to reply to your replies. I always read them but don’t always reply unless I feel I have something to add. I’m sorry. It’s the lazy in me.

                  Liked by 1 person

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                  1. Anne Goodwin's next novel is out May 29th

                    .It’s not so bad, so long as I remember to copy the comment. I know Hugh Roberts did a post a while ago on blog etiquette, but I don’t expect people to reply to replies on my blog. It’s great to know you’ve read them as it’s extra hassle going back to something outside WordPress. I wouldn’t call it lazy, especially when you have a rich conversation going on your own site. I think you are very generous in your support of blogs and bloggers.

                    Liked by 1 person

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                    1. Norah Post author

                      Thank you for your kind words of acceptance, Anne. I’m not sure that I’m totally worthy of them, but I am grateful for them anyway.
                      At the end of each month, I always revist your blog to make sure I’ve read all your posts and to read all of your comments. Sometimes I go back more often, but the end of the month is a reminder to me to do so. I will usually only comment again if I have something to add or if you have asked me a question. Conversations are definitely easier in WordPress, but I enjoy reading your blog so (lazy as I am) I make the effort – to read, at least. 🙂

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  5. Kate

    I love the last phrase, “she flew to kiss the welcoming skies”. I wonder if anyone ever blows kisses to the skies on a beautiful sunny day. I know I haven’t, but maybe some child has. Lovely flash.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply
    1. Norah Post author

      We all should, Kate. They are glorious and should be appreciated every day. Butterfly kisses on a blue sky day – I think you’ve just given me another phrase to play with. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

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