Good. Now here’s what poetry can do.


Good. Now here’s what poetry can do.

Imagine yourself a caterpillar.
There’s an awful shrug and, suddenly,
You’re beautiful for as long as you live.

~ Stephen Dunn, from Poem For People That Are Understandably Too Busy To Read Poetry (1966)



  • Post inspired by: “Butterflies are not insects,’ Captain John Sterling said soberly. ‘They are self-propelled flowers.” from Robert A. Heinlein, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls. Thank you Beth at Alive on All Channels.
  • And inspired by ZME Science: “The caterpillar’s  metamorphosis from a tree clinging, 12-legged pest into the majestic flying butterfly is one of the most used metaphors to describe a 180 transformation. It’s truly a fantastic mechanism developed by nature, yet while all my seem fantastic on the outside, this transformation looks pretty gruesome deep inside the chrysalis. In short, for a caterpillar to turn into a butterfly it digests itself using enzymes triggered by hormones, before sleeping cells similar to stem cells grow into the body parts of the future butterfly.”
  • Stephen Dunn Poem excerpt from The Vale of Soul-Making
  • Photo from We Heart It




  1. lovely

    Liked by 1 person

  2. magic

    Liked by 1 person

  3. And, it only took a shrug. Perfect.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. For as long as you live. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Gave me chills..

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on On the Homefront and commented:
    the truth…..


  7. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    Simply beautiful …. Just imagine!


  8. I just love the way Dunn sees the world…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m practicing shrugging. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Not so pretty for awhile…then beautiful forever! What a wonderful thought.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Perhaps we all have to die a little to transform and evolve…
    I’m saying “a little”, because the whole ides of eating myself is way too much to consider!I

    Liked by 1 person


  1. […] via Good. Now here’s what poetry can do. — Live & Learn […]


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