She was a butterfly. That's her whole story. She once was a butterfly, but she's no more. We could say that she died a few months ago, or that she died before she was born, or even that she was going to die in a century. All those scientific or symbolic views of life and death... We no more know what real death is and what real life is, or even existence, or life after death. Too many terms to express the only thing that matters in the time you spent your days before darkness comes into your mind.
There was a time when she flew over the flowers and the horizon appeared like a bright future waiting for her. But then came the kids. We all know this sad story of kids who catch those butterflies in Spring and put them in jars in order to see them fly in circles without any freedom. A prison for the creature which was born to be free, almost the saddest thing we could see in an entire life. And they understand that, if they open the jar, then the butterfly would flee as soon as possible. So they take this little butterfly in their hands, gently, taking so much care not to squish it, and they just slip the pretty wings and keep them. Wings never come back. Freedom never comes back. The meanest of them would directly burn the wings. I guess children are obsessed with fire. It destroys so many things.
This is the way her story was told. A story of burned wings in the Spring. She was like these little insignificant things that made the beauty of the world. She was beautiful, in a way. Because she used to smile, every time, she used to laugh, for no reason, she used to enjoy life, exactly as children do. But she was no more a child, confronted to the world's cruelty, to people's nature. The same nature that makes children burn wings. I guess the only thing that disappears with time is happiness.
She no longer wondered if she was happy or not, if she wanted to be like these billions of people who lived every day like the one before, with a job, a spouse, with children, a house, a car and all that stuff she denied. Actually, I now think she deeply believed in those things she denied. She was just a way too different to live this normal life she once dreamt to have. She was meant for something different.
She never understood the meaning of life. Of this life she lived. She could be born in another time, another age, another place, another world, and all those questions that troubled her mind would have vanished. But she was born there, in Paris, on July the 27th of 1994 and since that day, it seemed that everything was derisory, even her own existence. Her everyday life was all made of futilities, her relationships were just affiliations frayed with time, her whole time on earth was just unfulfilled and, mostly, useless. In some way, this was her truth. Life was meaningless. Life was useless.
She remembered of what was her life, or what it could be, what it might be. Nineteen is a young age to step back on memories, on past, on everything that was and will be never more. But at nineteen, we could believe that a dash of innocence remained in this young girl's heart. At this age, future is so unpredictable that it's likely that we keep a little mark of what we were before. So she looked back, at this moment, because she wanted to record forever what she still felt. Because, in the future, she was not sure to be able to feel again. Or even to live.
Her story, we could say it's a common, wounding and deplorable story. But she enjoyed the life she had, yes she did. I can't really assure she chose this life, this way she walked. What I can say is that she collided with the world. Reality knocked her down and her future seemed now so clear, all decided. Choices are not always explained by who we are; they mostly are justified by what we've been through now and then. Opening oneself to the world change people, I guess. And she changed, when she saw the real world for the first time; she became this wounded and marked girl who was scared to walk head high.
Now she was trying to understand how and why, why and how ; how things could get to this stage or why did they have to get to this stage? So many “why” in her minds. She wondered who she was after that. Or what she was. She was no “she” or “who”. She was “it” or “what”. Language decided she'd be « she ». Someone. Not something.
But there was a time she was a caterpillar. Yes, she had been a caterpillar which retired in its cocoon in order to travel the world with its pretty wings, to fly over nature and forage in the most beautiful flowers Earth ever created. Change in a dainty butterfly, that's what she wanted. Just strike out in life with as much impetus as these graceful insects which came out of their chrysalides with a new hope. These ephemeral beasts which did not wait any second to spread out their brand new wings. But the world is so cruel with butterflies! Or maybe, humanity is. Passionate people, who love butterflies as much as their own life, kill them and proudly show their supposed creation, jabbed on polystyrene. If not so, kids slip their wings. I think they don't really know what they do. They're just kids. Poor little butterflies, deprived of their too short freedom, condemned to live all the way through with the pain of being what they were never supposed to be, without their most precious possession.
She was one of them. One of those beautiful butterflies who flew and foraged in the Spring, enjoying the season, the only season they could live in. A life of few weeks, or maybe a few days. So ephemeral! Yes, she was one of them. And her pretty wings had been burnt. Maybe not because of kids. Maybe because of herself. How could she possibly not regret not have stayed a little caterpillar, without all those dreams of freedom before it was stolen from her? I guess she no longer feels nostalgic, or melancholic. I think it's far more than that. Because the poor little butterfly learnt from its lesson. And even if its wings would never come back, it understood that just flying gently and foraging was as rare as seeing a rose open in the Winter. Actually, they all deeply felt like butterflies with burned wings and the whole world tried to be as if they never had shimmering coloured wings, as if they never taste this happy life and then lost it. As if they all were born with burned wings. But she did not want to pretend, like these billions of people she did not understand. She wanted to always remember of her life as a caterpillar, of her time in the chrysalides, of all these moments she spent travelling the world with the feeling the end would never come, that the horizon was infinite. She wanted to remember. But, after all, she mostly wanted not to be a butterfly with burned wings anymore. This is her whole story. The story I can tell you. The story of a butterfly who flew too close to the Sun.