Butterfly Mandala


Hey, it’s Zen. I’m still figuring out how this blog stuff works and didn’t realize I hadn’t posted all the stuff Ive been writing. Sorry for these being out of sequence.


You may have noticed the beautiful butterfly mandala at the top of Pete’s blog, The Shaggist. I fell in love with this piece – a mirror image pair of wings with the most interesting coloration. Of course, it’s not a real butterfly, but a collage of pinkish lilies in an overlapping arrangement. I even made it the wallpaper on my computer so I wouldn’t have to keep going back to the Website where I found it.

I liked the mandala so much I printed out an extra large copy and hung it in my room at school. The kids all thought it was wonderful. We had Open House the other night and the little ones got to bring their parents to see the classroom and ask questions. Everything was going great until one mom lost her balance and fell backward onto a desk. Her husband helped her up but she was still kinda wheezing, like she was having an asthma attack. They left in a hurry and the rest of the night was uneventful.

Yesterday the principal called me to her office. I’ve never once been called to the the principal’s office, not even in Moralton. My teaching assistant said she would watch the class, so I hurried down the hallway stuffing the report cards I had been working on into my organizer. I arrived in the office just as a man I recognized as being on the school board was leaving. “Hello, Mr. Nicholson,” I beamed. Mr. Nicholson was one of the interviewers when I applied for my job here. He gazed at me with a look of puzzled bemusement. “Hello, Townsend.”

I had only had two encounters with Shirley Bell, the school principal, both times in passing. She scares the hell out of me. Seems the parent who had collapsed in my classroom at Open House saw something that greatly affected her, the butterfly mandala. “Yes, isn’t it great? I would have made a copy for her if I had known it was so powerful for her.” The tirade that followed would have made Hitler seem docile. I wanted to shrink into the chalkboard the rest of the day.

Pete suggested that we grab a drink so I could tell him all about it. I explained everything and how none of it made sense, just a picture of some butterflies. He couldn’t understand why the big reaction either until I showed him my tablet, which also has the mandala for its wallpaper too. I really thought the bartender would throw us out because he was in the fetal position, literally rolling on the floor in laughter. When he regained his composure, Pete asked if he could use the image on his Website and now its at the top of every page here!

So, what do you think? My first-graders really identified with it. Several of them have drawn me butterfly pictures with their crayons and markers, and every one of them is taped to the display board in my classroom. Nobody has said anything about their pictures, so I still don’t get it.

What’s wrong with some harmless butterflies?


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