The Three Little Butterfly Brothers by Carolyn Sherwin Balley

Story type: Literature

(Adapted from a German Folk Tale)

There were once three little butterfly brothers, one white, one red, and one yellow. They played in the sunshine, and danced among the flowers in the garden, and they never grew tired because they were so happy.

One day there came a heavy rain and it wet their wings. They flew away home, but when they got there they found the door locked and the key gone. So they had to stay outdoors in the rain, and they grew wetter and wetter.

By and by they flew to the red and yellow striped tulip, and said, “Friend Tulip, will you open your flower-cup and let us in until the storm is over.”

The tulip answered: “The red and yellow butterflies may enter because they are like me, but the white one may not come in.”

But the red and yellow butterflies said: “If our white brother may not find shelter in your flower-cup, why, then, we will stay outside in the rain with him.”

It rained harder and harder, and the poor little butterflies grew wetter and wetter, so they flew to the white lily and said: “Good Lily, will you open your bud a little so we may creep in out of the rain?”

The lily answered, “The white butterfly may come in, because he is like me, but the red and yellow ones must stay outside in the storm.”

Then the white butterfly said: “If you won’t receive my red and yellow brothers, why, then, I will stay out in the rain with them. We would rather be wet than parted.”

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So the three little butterflies flew away.

But the sun, who was behind a cloud, heard it all. He knew what good little brothers the butterflies were and how they had kept together in spite of the wet. So the sun pushed his face through the clouds and chased away the rain, and shone brightly on the garden.

He dried the wings of the three little butterflies, and warmed their bodies. They ceased to sorrow, and danced among the flowers until evening. Then they flew away home, and found the door wide open.

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