Gorgeous Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly Reminds Me of New York’s Rockettes

Tiger Swallowtail butterfly resting on a leaf photographed by Jeff Zablow at Raccoon Creek State Park, PA

I was not raised in a small, rural town. I grew up in Brooklyn, New York, with officially 3,000,000 people in that borough. We always knew that with the uncounted immigrants there at any time, the real number of those living in Brooklyn was nearly 4,000,000. I travelled by New York City subway for decades, amongst the hundreds of thousands who used the subway any morning or afternoon. Remember, I was the young guy, who as a delivery messenger working in Manhattan after college those years, had a package to be delivered to a Rockette in Radio City Music Hall, and there, was told to take it into the Rockette in the Rockette dressing room. I did, and I was briefly, immersed in infinite beauty, momentarily, but long enough.

All this by way of sharing that I have seen beauty and do find myself awestruck when natural beauty is one in a million. Like some, I get tongue-tied, despite that other facet of me, that having experienced temporary financial success, I am not awed in the presence of the very wealthy, celebrities or ‘stars.’ Beautiful women did/do quiet me down some.

Know then that when I happen onto certain butterflies, as a Gorgeous female tiger swallowtail butterfly, I find myself almost apologetic, as if I am intruding on her. I’ve experienced that quite a few times, and no amount of rationalization erased that feeling for the next time . . . .

Raccoon Creek State Park’s Nichol Road trail in southwestern Pennsylvania, an 8 hours drive west from that Radio City Music Hall in New York, New York.