6 hours ago
I will trade you one terrible memory for a memory I have of a young pine tree covered in butterflies.
A hundred monarchs resting on their long flight have lit here, on these green needles. You reach out. The tired creatures crawl onto your arms, wings slowly parting and closing, parting and closing, as they breathe. They rest, covering you in magic. You spin in the sunlight, laughing. You are very small, and they glow like candles behind colored glass. I will trade you one awful, inescapable thing for this one golden moment in time, this moment of honeycomb light and a warm autumn day tapering to endless evening.
Look, you have made the trade. You can take your memory back anytime, but you do not need to bear it always. Now I will hold it for you so that for a while it can be smaller and further away.
Look at the butterflies!