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Butterfly-Skinned Girl

who are you underneath?

By R.C. TaylorPublished 6 months ago Updated 6 months ago 2 min read
"Monarch", a painting by R.C. Taylor

butterfly-skinned girl,

you are so fragile the lightest touch steals

your iridescence, scales coming off like faerie

dust powder in the hands of those who harm

you with or without intention, yet you still fly

in spite of the myth that you'd die.

butterfly-skinned girl,

your veins are the roots of the Mother Tree,

sprawling throughout your body, crafted carefully

by your mother and her mother and her mother

and hers, whether there is rejection or acceptance

there but the Mother Tree is yours, the center

of your very being, lying between two lungs

that carry each panicked breath that rushes

up your throat as you cry out at night,

"am I good enough?"

the answer is yes. there has never been a

moment in your life where you haven't been

good enough.

butterfly-skinned girl,

you are the black sheep, wool grown so thick

so that no one can take your iridescence

and perhaps so that they would love you

more if you were dimmer than them but

growing wool as a butterfly meant covering your

body in ingrown hairs that painfully burst free

once they had grown thick from beneath each

of those thousands of shimmering scales.

thick wool that was watered by each

rejection that seeped into your bloodstream,

and made itself home in your roots and Mother Tree,

before making its way to your brain, and yet still,

they rejected you, and you could not go back

to the butterfly-skinned girl you once were.

butterfly-skinned girl,

your calling is to break curses cast unto you

by others and by yourself, to banish each woolen hair

one by one by one by turning yourself inside out

and straining your very ancestral root blood

with the healing that comes with learning only through

first unlearning. it is only a healing you asked for

and will follow through with for only the vulnerability

that they mistook for fragility could open the doors to you.

while you may never fly again, your butterfly-skin will

finally be able to breathe once more, wool shorn.

but this will be alright, because being a butterfly

was never about claiming the sky, it was always about

undergoing radical unbecoming for the chance

of transformative rebirth–of opening eyes that could

see more than they could before, ultraviolet high on esotericism.

who are you underneath all that wool,

black sheep?

butterfly-skinned girl?

my mother?

her mother?

her mother?

her mother?


heartbreaksocial commentaryslam poetrysad poetryperformance poetry

About the Creator

R.C. Taylor

Part-time daydreamer. Full-time dork.

Follow along for stories about a little bit of everything (i.e. adventure and other affairs of the heart).

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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Comments (5)

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  • The Dani Writer6 months ago

    This is all heights of beautiful. Thank you so much for writing and sharing!

  • Wow, so one, that was amazing. Loved it. But also, at first I was thinking, what a perfect image you found to use for this piece. And then I thought, maybe you saw the image first and then were inspired to write this. And then I realized you also PAINTED THAT! Amazing all around.

  • C.R. Hughes6 months ago

    "Who are you underneath all that wool, black sheep?" 🔥 This was beautiful. You capture the emotion of battling generational pain and insecurities so well. Thank you for sharing ❤️

  • Novel Allen6 months ago

    There is a buttefly girl hidden beneath all of our skin. Some of us just hide it better than others. Really deep and moving words R.C. For all who struggle to find our identities.

  • Great Powerful Piece❤️💯❗

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