Several years ago I read a story which was set in an orchard in Ontario and monarch butterflies were a strong symbol throughout the novel. Wish I could remember the title or author. The butterfly is such a fragile creature and yet migrates between Canada and Mexico in spring and autumn. The migration occurs over the lifespan of up to four generations, not one individual makes the entire round trip. Their flight patterns seem to be inherited and based on the position of the sun in the sky. I wish I could remember the title or the author as I could never get this image from my mind.
As a totem animal, butterfly speaks of transformation and joy. A reminder that all of life is a dance to enjoy, a reminder to move, to accept change as growth rather than traumatic. That life is sweet and gentle if we allow it.
NOTE: I love working with librarians...the book was 'Sanctuary Line' by Jane Urquhart. :)