“If a man aspires towards a righteous life, his first act of abstinence is from injury to animals.”
— Leo Tolstoy, The First Step
When I came across this grass skipper during my walk Sunday, it rested ever so gently upon a blade of grass still wet with morning’s heavy dew. There it perched, sometimes with wings spread for the world to see, sometimes with them held closely, as if guarded against some unseen foe.
I studied the gentle butterfly with eyes wide, and I watched as it drank from nature’s tears.
And when I intruded upon its solitude by moving too near, it turned to look at me, as if questioning whether I meant to harm it.
I promise, my dearest fiery skipper, I shall not douse your flame. Burn bright, burn hot, and burn as you see fit. I ask only that you let me share this brief experience with you.
[a male fiery skipper (Hylephila phyleus), or so I think, for so many grass skipper species share similar appearances]