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Miracle Soup

A poem for Oneg & James' "Break out of your cocoon" challenge

By L.C. SchäferPublished 6 months ago Updated 6 months ago 3 min read
Miracle Soup
Photo by James Crewdson on Unsplash

When you look at a butterfly

Her delicate wings fluttering with bright colours

Do you forget that miracle doesn't just mean lucky


When you are transfixed by her dancing colours

Awestruck by each finely spun line

Do you forget that exquisite doesn't mean nice


When you quiver and shine at what's possible

When you admire the beauty you can see

Do you forget the brutality of its design


When you see her brave the buffeting winds

An impossible scrap of hope and joy in the world

Do you only see her now

Do you forget what it took for her to get here


Every part of her broke apart from every other part

A living soup

That reformed itself

Made new

And then

She conquered her own fragility

Escaped the prison her former self built

After that her new life began

Where life means challenge, struggle, growth

Where growth means pain


Oh! they say, A miracle!

Joy! they think,

Wonderment, awe and luck


They forget the other parts

The under parts

The night before the brilliant morning

The nightmare before waking

The shadow before and behind the bright splash


The parts that hurt

That break you

Take you

Beyond yourself

Make you

Face terror

Feel it seep into you

It becomes you.

You become it, entirely

Lose yourself, completely

Come apart, totally



Made new


When those gossamer wings tremble in sunlight

Or a mother's arms gently cocoon

A brand new soul

Remember what it cost them to be here


Miracle doesn't mean free

Everything has a price

Bought for the goodness in your bones

For the privilege of reduction

The fall to your knees

It doesn't come cheap

It comes with a challenge to your very Self

It doesn't just make you go beyond what you think your limits are

It makes you.

But first it breaks you

Breaks your heart

Breaks you apart

Knits you back together

Whether you want it to or not


She comes apart to bring a new soul through

And knits back together as a new person herself

Just like the butterfly comes apart

And then with great effort, comes through

This isn't brokenness,

this is beautiful.


When you see perfection

In vibrant hues

Or or the pink newness of tiny wrinkled fingers

Do you see the balance

Between vulnerability and vitality?

Soft wings like gossamer kisses

A tiny fluttering

That brings a storm


Will you shut your eyes to it

The goo your beautiful butterfly is born from

The soup of blood and shit and fear and doubt

That heralds a new person

And the remaking of another

A mother

The struggle

- body, mind, and soul -

that threatens to obliterate,

Will you turn away

From the gruesome shadow, the mucky underbelly?

Deny the price they paid

For those bright colours and perfect lines?



Thank you for reading! Please leave a comment to make it easy for me to reciprocate. I appreciate your thoughtful engagement.

I wrote this for James & Oneg's Summer Writing Challenge Extravaganza and I was tagged by Oneg.

I want to give a special shout out to Kayleigh Fraser for this one as well. I've had this idea germinating in my brain since our recent conversation.

Transformation - true transformation - comes at a cost. It is impossible to achieve without that cost. Thavien discusses this in the context of your fictional character's growth, and how it is necessary for them to have their ass handed to them. This is very astute advice IMO!

More from me:

I explore similar themes in this bit of fiction.

Here is something a bit more lighthearted - Have You Got a Minute?

Some non-fiction - E-Readers vs "Real" Books

A recipe, if you'd like something a bit different - Eggs Benedict

And some reviews - Critiques That Didn't Squeak

surreal poetrynature poetry

About the Creator

L.C. Schäfer

Book-baby is available on Kindle Unlimited

Flexing the writing muscle

Never so naked as I am on a page. Subscribe for nudes.

Here be micros

Twitter, Insta Facey

Sometimes writes under S.E.Holz

"I've read books. Well. Chewed books."

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Comments (19)

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  • Rob Angeli6 months ago

    Wow, a really stunning metamorphoses, love the way the motherhood metaphor is integrated. I see the form of the chrysalis in the spill of the lines, so lovely.

  • Donna Fox (HKB)6 months ago

    L.C. this was so beautifully written! I love the reminder that you never know what's going on below the surface! That people always praise what they see and not the work that went into the transformation! Very insightfully written!

  • Leslie Writes6 months ago

    Oh wow! Gut punch! I love it!

  • Denise E Lindquist6 months ago


  • Kristen Balyeat6 months ago

    Wow, this is really gorgeous, L.C.! I think about this analogy all the time, and you have penned (typed) it so perfectly. Such vivid imagery here. A lot to sit with. Wonderful job!

  • Dana Crandell6 months ago

    This is hard truth, beautifully expressed. We never question, or worse, tend to forget the price paid for miracles, and the caterpillar to butterfly transformation is the perfect analogy. Well done, LC!

  • A great take on the challenge, wonderful words

  • Babs Iverson6 months ago

    Loving those gossamer lines!!! Beautifully written!!!❤️❤️💕

  • Ah, everything does come with a price. The bitter truth of life. Loved this powerful poem!

  • So powerful and very well done! Especially your last stanza. I love that our conversation continued this way!!!! ❤️✨🙏

  • Thavien Yliaster6 months ago

    Mmmmm... butterfly soup. Now I wonder if that's a cuisine in some part of the world. Imagine three types of soup: caterpillar soup, transformational soup, and butterfly soup. Now, on a more serious note You are right about how some miracles need to go through painful, excruciating, changes. There is nothing gained without something being given. An athlete has to be disciplined in diet, regime, and training. A scholar must be disciplined in being well researched. A writer must be disciplined in putting pen to paper from that which emerges from their mind, much like an engineer does to. In order for magnificent changes, time and effort must take place. From the landscape and weather cycles that shaped our planet, to the development of a newly formed life, to the changing of one's habits into a lifestyle.

  • Tiffany Gordon 6 months ago


  • Mother Combs6 months ago

    love this

  • Alex H Mittelman 6 months ago

    Beautiful butterfly poem! And relatable! We’ve all been broken! Great poem!

  • Oneg In The Arctic6 months ago

    I love this line so much “ Do you forget that miracle doesn't just mean lucky” it’s just so beautiful. Like wow. This whole poem. Like wow.

  • Kenny Penn6 months ago

    I felt this one down to my bones. Excellent poem, LC

  • Joelle E🌙6 months ago

    This is such a good one LC :)

  • Sid Aaron Hirji6 months ago

    I can see a possible top story here

  • Rene Peters6 months ago

    Love this! It is a good reminder that stuff doesn't come easy and it takes effort (at least that's what my concussed brain got from it 😅).

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