🎧 Bedtime Story Podcast #37
Curtis The Creative Caterpillar
You might have heard stories about caterpillars before. They eat and eat and eat, until eventually they are completely full, filled with energy, and they make themselves a little house, a cocoon to rest in, and they transform themselves into butterflies within them.
But there was one caterpillar who was different. His name was Curtis, and he was always upset.
“Why can’t I turn into a butterfly!” Curtis would
say, angrily. “All the other caterpillars turn into butterflies. Why can’t I?”
There was a wise old bee named Bertie who would listen to Curtis and his complaints.
“Patience,” the wise old bee said. “Patience.”
Curtis waited for weeks and weeks. He waited as much as he could. But still, he was just a caterpillar.
“I’m still just a caterpillar. I’m still just a caterpillar! Curtis kept saying. “Why can’t I become a butterfly?”
“Listen!” Bertie whispered. “Listen to what the other caterpillars are saying…”
Curtis became quiet for a moment. His complaining ceased, and he became aware of the murmurings of the caterpillars around him.
One nearby was saying:
“I like being a caterpillar. And I will like being a butterfly too.”
Another caterpillar was talking to itself:
“I get to eat everything I want, and soon I will be able to fly!”
As Curtis listened more and more, he realised something. Either the caterpillars were talking about how great it was to be a caterpillar, or they were looking forward to being a butterfly. Most of the time, they did both.”
“But why aren’t I a butterfly!” Curtis yelled at Bertie the bee. “It’s taking me far too long!”
“If you say so,” Bertie the bee said. “If you say so.”
The next days for Curtis were painful. He kept telling Bertie that he was stuck as a caterpillar, and might be forever stuck and unable to fly, and all Bertie would say back was:
If you say so.
Curtis kept telling Bertie that it wasn’t fair, that something must be wrong, that maybe he was never meant to be a beautiful butterfly.
“If you say so,” Bertie would reply.
One day Curtis woke up, and he realised he didn’t like the words in his head. They made him feel stuck and horrid. So he decided to change his words so that he could at least feel better.
“I want to be a butterfly,” he said to Bertie. “I am a healthy caterpillar, which is good. I have plenty to eat, which is good and, now I would like to become a butterfly.”
“If you say so,” Bertie said.
The next day Curtis wriggled up to Bertie and said: “I had a dream about being a butterfly last night, Bertie. I think it will happen. I think it can happen!”
“If you say so,” Bertie said.
“And then on the third day,” Curtis said to Bertie:
It will be so wonderful when I fly for the first time. I can feel it already. I can feel it as if it’s already happening. My life as a butterfly is wonderful, Bertie, I wish you could see it!”
And then without Bertie saying another word, Curtis felt like going somewhere quiet and safe. He wanted to build himself a little house, a cocoon that he could rest in, and soon enough, after lying in his cocoon for a while, he emerged as the biggest, most beautiful butterfly that Bertie had ever seen.
“You are indeed a beautiful butterfly now!” Bertie called up at Curtis, as Curtis flew away.
“Thank you!” Curtis called back. “If you say so!”
Story written and read by Adam Oakley, Copyright © Adam Oakley