© copyright 2008 

     Imagination is a butterfly, the blossoming of caterpillar dreams.
    Imagination is a ship that sails on wide and boundless streams.                    But butterflies, and sailing ships can sometimes drift into
    A more vivid realm, a magic place, a wonderland—called You.                                                                                                ~ Anonymous ~
(Except for a few changes by Tom Tate)​

     May-Lin was one of nature's loveliest and most extraordinary creations. She was also one of the most elusive. The blithe and sprightly butterfly zipped higher to avoid being crushed as a towheaded boy strode across the field, approaching a family of field mice. He reached down and sprinkled the grass with cookie crumbs. The mice scurried off at first, then gave themselves up to the 'giant' and his tasty treats.
     “You've made some friends,” May-Lin observed.
     “Maybe now they'll hang around so I can capture them—uh, on canvas I mean.” Brandishing a sable paintbrush, the young artist directed the butterfly over to his easel. “I've been in this meadow all day trying to paint, but I haven't seen anything out of the ordinary that inspires me.” 
     May-Lin lighted on the boy's canvas. It was blank except for a few sketchy circles. “Not very much to show for a day's work.”
     “Those are supposed to be clouds … Hardly breathtaking, are they.”
     May-Lin studied the circles. “Your creative Muse, doesn't appear to be very creative,” she remarked. “Still … I see some potential there. “Let me show you … There's nothing 'ordinary' about clouds—Follow me.” The butterfly spread her exquisite pair of wings and spiraled around the young artist's head. He didn't know how to follow, except by spinning around and around … and this left him feeling dizzy as a top.
      “A good artist can create a picture to capture the breath of any who gaze upon it,” said May-Lin, wings whirling “… provided they are willing to be taken away … even to the clouds.”
     In the blink of a butterfly eye, the field mice were left alone to enjoy their crumbs. They would be the first to agree, their neighbor was a most extraordinary creature.