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The Year of the Butterfly

Was it bad sushi? Was she overwhelmed by housework? Or was it a spiritual message from beyond? The SongMom has a psychedelic moment with a music legend.

Last night, I dreamed that my hallway was covered with children’s toys and hundreds of fat green and yellow caterpillars crawled here and there, jockeying for position. I got a little irritated, because the last time I had seen my dream hallway, it had been spotless, as all the hallways in a mother’s dream should be. I had been here before, many times, and I had just begun to have the courage to explore where my hallway, and the endless doors that lined each side, actually led.

Now, however, it seemed there were people living behind the doors—people I didn't know—who let their children throw their toys around carelessly and allowed caterpillars to roam free. 

I carefully stepped around each item and finally came across an open door, where I saw a young girl sitting on the floor, her long, blonde hair hiding her face as she played on her laptop.

“Where are your parents?” I asked her, concerned. 

“They are out,” she replied matter-of-factly. I noticed that her eyes didn’t even leave the computer screen.

“Well, what is the deal with the mess out here?" I asked her, pointing to the strange caterpillar hallway. “I can’t even get through it.”

“Oh, it's easier if you just go through this way, like my dad does,” she replied, referring to a door to the far left of the room. She then looked up at me, her green eyes flashing with merriment before returning to her computer, her fingers flying across the keyboard like a spider weaving its web.

I walked to the door and opened it. 

Suddenly, I was surrounded by tall gardens and a forest of sunflowers.  In the distance, I saw a man with long, wavy, brown hair sitting on the grass, his back to me. I walked over, determined to find out who left the mess in my hallway.

“Excuse me,” I called out to him. He didn’t turn around. Instead, he looked straight ahead. I stopped as I got within a few feet of him.  “I’ve been waiting for you, Casey Stark,” he said. Taking off his sunglasses, he stared up at me with stormy gray eyes and smiled wistfully. 

In his right hand, he played with a long blade of wheatgrass, twirling it between his fingers like a baton.

“You are here about the hallway,” he said, his voice deep and mysterious. 

In the distance, I heard music. The gentle strumming of an acoustic guitar and soft voices made their way through the wind, sparkling like diamonds as they swirled through the trees. 

“So, this is what music looks like!” I suddenly said, mesmerized.

He said nothing; he just nodded his head and watched the music move through the sunflowers. Occasionally, it would hit an obstacle and explode like a colorful firecracker, making a soft tinkling sound as it floated in a waterfall of color, softly to the ground.

The man began to speak.

“The hallway is the beginning of a new path you are taking in life. It symbolizes self-exploration, a journey into the unknown where new opportunities will open up.  

"The caterpillars signify a stage in your personal growth and development where you are on your way but have not quite gotten there yet.” 

He turned and looked at me, curious.  Pointing to the sprig of wheatgrass at me, he said, “You are close, though, really close ... you finally are on the right path.”

“But what about those toys?” I asked.  “What am I going to do with them?"  I was still determined to clean my hallway.

“They are yours,” he said, “the childhood aspects within yourself that you still need to nurture. These are your dreams, your innocence, your idealism and your never-ending spirit of optimism that touches the lives of more people than you realize.”

He looked all around him, this beautiful place in a room outside my hallway, as if seeing it for the first time. 

“This is when everything changes … this is the Year of the Butterfly!” he said, laughing out loud and swinging his arms up and down.

“Who the heck are you?” I asked him, suddenly realizing this was one  crazy dream.

“They used to call me Jim,” he replied, standing up and putting his sunglasses on. “Here, in this place, we are all just called 'Dreamers."

And with that, I watched in amazement as Jim Morrison walked away in the direction of the wind, only the speck of his blue polyester shirt remaining before he too, vanished into the music.

Amanda Williams August 26, 2011 at 12:58 PM
Cosmic! I was just thinking about Jim Morrison last night. "Awake, shake dreams from your hair, my pretty child my sweet one. Choose the day & choose the sign of your day, the day's divinity." Jim was one of the great Dreamers as you call him. What interesting insight you got from that dream! Very cool. I hate to see this as your last Patch, but I'm sure you'll send us all a link to your Word Press blog. Much love, Amanda - fellow Song Mom
Connie B. August 26, 2011 at 02:57 PM
Casey, Casey, Casey, my what vivid dreams you have! Thanks for the stories, laughs and tears. I looked forward to the stories. God bless you and your family. Love you tons. Connie
Casey Stark August 26, 2011 at 06:08 PM
@ my fellow Song Mom Amanda...yes Jim Morrison was one of the greats! I got to re-appreciate him during the process of this story, there are some fantastic YouTube videos out there that just "blew my mind" Morrison style. Thank you for reading and for your encouragement - you are an angel! I will keep you posted where I land! xo
Casey Stark August 26, 2011 at 10:57 PM
@Connie, I read somewhere "its the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting". I can't imagine living life any other way. Thank you for reading and I promise to keep you laughing forever!
Casey Stark August 27, 2011 at 06:05 AM
Hi Casey, I loved that story. Dreams reveal intriguing insight that is for sure. And I believe they connect us with the spirit world--I believe you indeed had a conversation with Jim Morrison! Very cool. P.K. Knudsen, Irvine
Casey Stark August 27, 2011 at 06:11 AM
"Hi Casey, Love it..great job.. I was there with you in your dream place.. beautiful. You go Butterfly Girl!! Keep us posted on your new songs!" T.B. Hong
Sherilynn Grayson August 29, 2011 at 01:28 AM
I agree with Amanda. Absolutely epic story. I don't know how you take me from reality to the dream world, and paint such amazing pictures along the way. I think Jim the Dreamer was right - you are headed for great things, probably bigger than you know. Please let me know where you are going, and I will follow you!
Casey Stark August 30, 2011 at 03:34 AM
Sherilynn, thank you for reading and for your beautiful comment. I am so grateful that I got to spend an awesome year at LN Patch and got to meet you and all the other great readers! Its been so much fun and I have to thank my editor, Debbie Sklar, for believing in SongMom and my stories. I am off to studio now, and you can check out my music at www.reverbnation.com/caseystark.
erin August 30, 2011 at 04:32 PM
total departure but very cool and inspiring - looking forward to your next story!
Casey Stark August 30, 2011 at 05:16 PM
Hi erin! Inspired by a dream - I fore-warned the readers this was gonna be a work of fantasy. Personally I would have liked to have met Elvis Presley outside my hallway, he probably would have been a little less "cryptic". This summer Buggie and I raised sunflowers and butterflies, was truly magical in a more real way! More on the way and thanks for reading!
Laura August 30, 2011 at 05:18 PM
Cool dream. I love the photo of your kidlet with the butterfly on her nose. A classic!
Shelly F. August 30, 2011 at 05:50 PM
Very creative and enjoyed reading. God has surely blessed you with this awesome gift of writing;-)
Sheila A. August 30, 2011 at 09:13 PM
Wow what an amazing imagination or is it???? The way you write and dream and remember is truely a gift Casey. Thanks for sharing your life with all of us. It makes me think more and look at lives treasure a little different. You have a wonderful gift, never give up and I know you will be up in the stars...

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