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The Quest for the Blue Morpho
By Sijo Smith, Gruening Middle School
Genre: Non-fiction
Year: 2010 Category: UAA/ADN Creative Writing Contest

Sunlight glinted off iridescent blue wings, making them shimmer, as the butterfly flitted gracefully through the trees. The sight caught my breath.

It was March and my mother and I were in Costa Rica for my two-week spring break. At the butterfly moment, we were in a national rainforest, taking a canopy tour in an aerial tram. I have always loved butterflies, and a couple of days before we left for Costa Rica, my mother and I watched a movie called "The Blue Butterfly" about the legendary Blue Morpho. Catching a glimpse of the Blue Morpho became a focus of our trip.

The Blue Morpho is one of the largest butterflies in the world. The top side of the Blue Morpho's wings is a startling blue. The underside is a dull brown with dark spots. As a result of this up-down two-color scheme, the flying Morpho has a magical blue shimmer. At rest, with its wings closed, it disappears. Because of its seemingly magical properties, the Blue Morpho is revered by the natives of Costa Rica, who attribute spiritual powers to this butterfly.

So there we were, searching for his special butterfly in the Costa Rican rainforest, when, all of a sudden, I heard my mother whisper, "Look! Over there!" I quickly turned in the direction she pointed, and I saw it shimmering in the air right in front of us.

"Amazing," I gasped. And it truly was breathtaking. The Blue Morpho was there, and then it was not, and then it was there again. The blue sparkle followed the tram line passage through the rainforest ahead of us, like a Tinkerbell, pulling us along with its mesmerizing glitter. Then, as suddenly as it appeared, it was gone.

I still, however, hold that blue shimmer in my mind.

About the Author: Winner, UAA/ADN Creative Writing Contest, 2010 - Nonfiction, Grades 7-12

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