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Butterfly Upon the Sky: Dickinson Tribute

by Patience

Surrealism Art Gallery

Art: Butterfly Upon the Sky: Dickinson Tribute by Artist Patience

My entry for the June 2016 Nibblefest Art Contest, the theme being "Butterflies", featured a tribute portrait of Emily Dickinson and her poem, "The Butterfly Upon the Sky"...   I am also entering this as a "Better Late Than Never" piece, for the theme, "Crowns"....

What comes to mind when you think about butterflies....?  For me, it's the stately American Monarch.  Or more specifically, the trouble that our lovely Monarch Butterflies are currently finding themselves in.  They are at grave risk of becoming endangered.  This once ubiquitous Lepidoptera, which used to be EVERYWHERE when I was a kid....?  How can this be?

As I understand, the primary issue for their decreasing numbers, is their food source, the Milkweed.  A once common prairie plant, the Milkweed is the ONE and ONLY food source for the Monarch Butterfly caterpillar.  The adults lay their eggs on the underside of the leaves, and the larvae hatch and feast.   Loss of habitat, in combination with uber-effective new-generation herbicides in the agricultural industry, have really done a number on this once-common 'weed'.  It no longer grows in America in numerous, wide swaths as it once did.  So it's simple math really -- no Milkweed, no Monarch Butterflies....  

As such, Monarchs were heavily in my mind as I reflected upon this month's "Butterflies" theme.  To help me flesh out my concept, I turned to some lines of poetry by one of my favorites, the legendary Emily Dickinson.  She wrote a short poem entitled, "The Butterfly Upon the Sky".  A tribute to a classic butterfly should only be paired with a classic American poet, don't you agree...?  Monarchs, the 'Kings' of American butterflies, and Dickinson, the "Queen" of American poetry.....

The Butterlfy Upon the Sky, 
By Emily Dickinson

The Butterfly upon the Sky,
That doesn't know its Name
And hasn't any tax to pay
And hasn't any Home
Is just as high as you and I,
And higher, I believe,
So soar away and never sigh
And that's the way to grieve -

By Emily Dickinson



Detail Images

Detail Image for art Butterfly Upon the Sky: Dickinson Tribute


Detail Image for art Butterfly Upon the Sky: Dickinson Tribute



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