Once I broke a butterfly. She flew into my bedroom, fancied herself safe amidst dolls and books and a colony of little mice fashioned from seashells and pipe cleaners. I watched her as she frolicked, floating with wings outstretched until she fell upon my open palm, fragile as a flame. I shredded her golden wings like wet paper. My father breathed into my ear as he placed his sweaty hands on mine, guiding my fingers. “So beautiful,” he murmured, and tore.