Kim Barney

Gold Star - 168,979 Points (Oct 6 / I was born in a bank - - my mother went there and made a deposit)

Butterfly Of Death - Poem by Kim Barney

I was sitting in my garden
Just relaxing in my garden
Doing nothing in my garden
When I saw a butterfly

Butterfly there in my garden
Appearing there of a sudden
Not surprising in my garden
To appear a butterfly

There was something very different
In this creature from my garden
Beautiful he was but fright'ning
Butterfly in my garden

Something he was saying to me
Something softly whispered to me
Something audible just barely
This butterfly in my garden

His words came softly to my ear
Those words were soft but they were clear
My blood ran cold when I did hear
Yo soy la Marisposa de la Muerte!

I understood those words, all right
And my whole soul was filled with fright
To die just now did not seem right
So I feigned ignorance

Spanish, I do not speak, I said
Please try some other tongue instead
Or go away and leave me be,
Strange creature from my garden

Closer he came, my fright increased
My heart beat faster, almost ceased
And once more spoke the little beast:
Ich bin der Schmetterling des Todes!

I do not understand, my friend.
That sounds like German (I pretend
I'm unable to comprehend
This creature from my garden)

Closer he came, within three feet
My heart increased its frantic beat
Louder he spoke, almost a bleat:
Eu sou a Borboleta da Morte!

Filled with terror am I by now
Thinking I must escape somehow
Yet I know this he'll not allow,
This specter from my garden

My mouth is dry, I cannot speak
I try to run but I'm too weak
And then he lands upon my cheek,
This phantom from my garden!

I am all numb and paralyzed
All my worst fears are realized
These words I hear with my last breath:
I am the Butterfly of Death!

Topic(s) of this poem: butterflies, butterfly, death, horror, life and death, nature, terror


Poet's Notes about The Poem

This is a poem written to go with a picture. The picture used here was formerly attached to a different poem, but I got looking at the expression on the little girl's face and thought: 'What is she afraid of? You'd think she was being attacked by the Butterfly of Death! '

Written 20 Jan 2015
Recife, Pernambuco, Brasil

Note: I deactivated this poem (temporarily, I thought) to see what poem PH would put in its place as one of my most popular ones, but when I went to reactivate it, I could not do so. I was forced to resubmit it. I still have about a dozen other poems that have to be redone also.

17 August 2016

Note: On 25 March 2017 this poem was selected as Member Poem of the day, one of five poems so far to receive this honor.

Thank you, Poem Hunter!

Comments about Butterfly Of Death by Kim Barney

  • Thomas CaseThomas Case (8/14/2019 10:51:00 PM)

    wow...the tension builds, I feel your fear and anxiety. Nice work. (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Julia Luber (6/14/2019 1:05:00 PM)

    I like this poem. A steady insistent rhythm and beat builds up the suspense. The surprise of that fear of an unknown buzzard in one's garden is foiled by that being a butterfly- not a mosquito or a flying ladybug. We so usually associate butterflies with beauty and a sense of freedom. That this is the butterfly of death is a surprise! (Report)Reply

    Kim BarneyKim Barney(6/14/2019 7:09:00 PM)

    Julia, thank you for your generous comment!

    5 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Roseann Shawiak (3/28/2019 4:59:00 PM)

    Just a little comment, repetition is not always conducive to a poem,
    possibly though because of my photographic memory, it takes away
    from the essence of the poem when being read. The poem in and of
    itself is good, great imagery!
    i.e. I was sitting in my garden, just relaxing, doing nothing when I
    saw a butterfly appearing there all of a sudden, not surprisingly,
    (Report)Reply

    Maryellen Smith(3/30/2019 1:44:00 AM)

    RoseAnn,
    I think that in this case, the repetition is what MAKES the poem. This has a kind of Edgar Allan Poe feel to it. THE RAVEN would not be nearly as good without all that repetition!
    Sorry, but your two lines of 'revision' are sadly lacking!

    4 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rose Marie Juan-austinRose Marie Juan-austin (3/12/2019 8:50:00 PM)

    A very gripping imaginative write.
    In a couple of seconds I was able to witness a butterfly of death.
    So vividly depicted.
    The recurring words make the poem more interesting.
    Beautifully crafted and well executed write.10+++++
    (Report)Reply

    6 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Laurie Van Der HartLaurie Van Der Hart (1/1/2018 12:42:00 AM)

    Discovered this one. Extremely creative and original. Interesting way the poem developed from a photo. So borboleta is butterfly in Portuguese?
    Here are some more contributions just for fun:
    EK is die skoonlapper van die dood. (Afrikaans)
    Je suis le papillon de la mort (French)
    Já jsem motýl smrti (Czech)
    나는 죽음의 나비 다. (Korean)
    Mimi ni kipepeo kifo (Swahili)
    (Report)Reply

    17 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Feipeng ShangFeipeng Shang (11/1/2017 2:26:00 PM)

    How about?
    wo shi si wang zhi die
    我是死亡之蝶

    No one can ever run away from death :)
    (Report)Reply

    15 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Ratnakar Mandlik (3/25/2017 11:55:00 PM)

    A thoughtfully conceived piece of fine art at quite a leisure. Congrats on it's selection as member poem of the Day. (Report)Reply

    22 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Robert Eckstein (3/25/2017 9:52:00 PM)

    Yes, reminds me of the traveler to Samara. Take a look at Kiss. (Report)Reply

    23 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Kuda Bondamakara (3/25/2017 7:29:00 PM)

    a beautifully scuplted poem. (Report)Reply

    24 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Douglas Scotney (3/25/2017 7:13:00 PM)

    you play around for a while in bliss; keep playing even when death looms. (Report)Reply

    23 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Michael WalkerMichael Walker (3/25/2017 6:56:00 PM)

    A very riveting surprise ending. Who would think that a butterfly could cause death?
    The 4-lined stanzas hold the reader's interest throughout.
    (Report)Reply

    23 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Sylvaonyema UbaSylvaonyema Uba (3/25/2017 4:31:00 PM)

    I was sitting in my garden
    And relaxing in my garden
    Doing nothing in my garden

    Good use of repetition of 'garden'

    Sylva
    (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Dorina NeculceDorina Neculce (3/25/2017 4:17:00 PM)

    I am all numb and paralyzed
    All my worst fears are realized
    These words I hear with my last breath:
    I am the Butterfly of Death! .........................nice
    (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel Black (3/25/2017 1:32:00 PM)

    Very suspenseful poem..kept me riveted all the way to the end..the butterfly symbolizes the Soul.. (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Geeta Radhakrishna MenonGeeta Radhakrishna Menon (3/25/2017 1:07:00 PM)

    An incredibly captivating poem that keeps you glued to the seat.
    Reading the butterfly of death was like watching a horror film.
    Imagine! An innocent creature like a butterfly developing into a demon of death.
    Goes to show the poetic imagination of Kim Barney, who can weave an awesome story
    with the lightest creations of nature like a petite butterfly that has the power to infuse fear
    and dread into the human mind.
    I salute the poet.
    I was sitting in my garden
    Just relaxing in my garden
    Doing nothing in my garden
    When I saw a butterfly!
    Whenever i see butterflies in the garden, i am sure to remember this poem.
    Kim Barney, dear Sir, you deserve a 100+++
    (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Geetha JayakumarGeetha Jayakumar (3/25/2017 12:49:00 PM)

    A Beautiful poem singing in between life and death. Congrats on Member poem of the day. Loved reading it. (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Anil Kumar PandaAnil Kumar Panda (3/25/2017 11:59:00 AM)

    An awesome drop- a butterfly signifying death and destruction. Very rare such comparision is made. You have proved your point rightly giving a sweet flow to the poem. Very nice. (Report)Reply

    22 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Kumarmani MahakulKumarmani Mahakul (3/25/2017 10:30:00 AM)

    Sudden appearance of butterfly in your garden has increased life's status. Soft whispering of butterfly mesmerizes mind. Horror brings worries. Butterfly of death amazes mind. Hearing the words of last breath brings emotion. Butterfly is symbol of transformation. Congratulation! ...10 (Report)Reply

    24 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Clarence PrinceClarence Prince (3/25/2017 8:58:00 AM)

    This makes good reading!
    I think butterflies were harmless, but now know different!
    Thanks for sharing!
    (Report)Reply

    24 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Bharati NayakBharati Nayak (3/25/2017 8:20:00 AM)

    A very imaginative write.You took a soft symbol as an image to describe the most dreaded fact of life and successfully evoked the emotions of fear.Life is full of beauty like a butterfly and fear like death.We have to face both.We can not pretend not knowing this truth as it is the ultimate truth.I like the way you used the symbol of different languages like Spanish or German to describe ignorance.Congratulations for Poem of the Day. (Report)Reply

    24 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 45 comments »




Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags


Poem Submitted: Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Poem Edited: Sunday, March 24, 2019


[Report Error]