Have you ever read something that you just could not get to leave your mind? "Chaos Theory" by Clinton Smith was that for me. This poem explores the idea of how one small difference could change everything, the people we know, the way we are, who we are, everything. That something so small as a butterfly would change the people we met in our lives. It has to ability to get under your skin and resonate within you and that is what got me. That and the fear it struck within me after finishing it. In the poem Clinton Smith writes, "maybe we would both be plants on opposite sides of the same coral reef, so that we could have been connected without ever having met," is another powerful statement. To think about having a connection yet not even knowing with an important person in your life makes you really think, who aren't you meeting.
This poem's end had the deepest lasting effect on me, "but what I mean to say is that it would have been such a tragedy if something happened that would have prevented me from meeting you". At this time in my life, I have someone in my life who means this much to me. It's this that made me freeze and think about this poem for days. The raw innocence in this poem about the fear of losing some one so special to you is so easily relatable. It made me think that if a butterfly could change anything, what would have happened if I never decided to move back to West Virginia. I would have never met her, I would have never fallen in love, I would have never found my passion for teaching, I would have never dyed my hair purple, I would have never met the best group of friends I have ever had, I would have never gotten my fish, I would have never connected and grown with my sister as much, I would have never gotten a cactus. It's the little things as well as the big things he makes you appreciate.
When I first read this, I never focused as much on the butterfly until a few times later. Maybe he chose the butterfly for a deeper meaning. Why a butterfly, I kept thinking and thinking until I went to look up a type of butterfly and the butterfly effect appeared in the search engine and it clicked. This poem can be a play on the butterfly effect and that's why he chooses the butterfly as his main reference. The butterfly effect states, small causes can have larger effects. Clinton Smith ponders the effects a butterfly flying in the wrong direction changing who we are, if we ever met, or if we ever existed. Therefore referencing something small changing something so much larger. Whether or not that was his way of thinking, that idea made me appreciate the poem much more than before and share it with so many more people.
Fallen (2015), Paul Villinski
17, senior at Spring Mills High School in Martinsburg, West Virginia. I drink too much tea and have a candle lit probably too long and too much. Usually if I am drinking coffee it has extra caramel in it. I belong to the 3.4% of people in West Virginia who are gay and I'm extremely proud. My hair's purple and I have a cute stud on the left side of my nose.
I struggle with stress and anxiety which makes me go crazy sometimes. I'm very emotional and may cry a tad too much. I most definitely wear my heart on my sleeve and probably the biggest hopeless romantic you will meet. I fidget and can't sit still half the time but I still manage to get things done.
My favorite colors, maroon and gray, while some people call them dark and drab I call it beautiful. While they are darker colors they can come from a light color, pink and white, but also black to make it darker. My favorite fruit is pineapple, and eat too much chicken especially nuggets. `I have a beautiful fish named Melvyn and an adorable cactus named Janet (named while I was watching Rocky Horror Picture Show).
Beautiful things in my eyes:
Now don’t confuse that with being alone. At times I enjoy being alone, left to be with myself, to breathe, and prepare myself to get back out there but loneliness that’s different. That is being in a room full of people and felling like they are all faceless, emotionless, not actually there. That even though you have a group of people who call themselves your friends you still feel like you are the only one you can turn to.
Oh and spiders….I'm terrified of spiders.
Things I keep at the top of my thoughts: Try not to take yourself to seriously. Laugh, live a little, let yourself be the weird ass you know you are and don’t care about what others think of you.
I am Molly Herdering and that's just a little part of who I am.