Happiness in Cica’s Garden in Second Life

Cica Ghost: Garden, May 2022
Happiness is a butterfly in my garden.

This is the sentence Cica Ghost uses to introduce visitors to her latest installation in Second Life, entitled Garden. It’s an expression that brings to mind a couple of thoughts, both of which aptly apply to Cica’s build.

The first expression comes from taking Cica’s words as given. For who can look upon butterflies on a summer’s day as they flutter around the blooming plants of a garden seemingly at random with brightly coloured wings catching the sunlight or raised like gay sails as they rest upon leaf, flower, or branch, and not feel a sense of happiness and joy?

Cica Ghost: Garden, May 2022

And within this setting there are butterflies a-plenty, hovering here and there over an expanse of clover and grass and flowers that tower over visitors like trees, and within which watering cans stand like (and indeed, have become) houses. Along with the butterflies, ants are also at work – more particularly, at play. Some chat with the butterflies, some sit upon the bent stalks of flowers or clover, waving for us to photograph them, whilst others perform feats of acrobatics in order to get up onto taller stalks!

Caught beneath a hazy teal sky, this is a wild corner of a garden with trails winding between tall flowers and clovers to lead visitors to places where they can sit and observe or join in a happy little dance alongside butterflies or ants, or – if they accept Cica’s gift at the landing point – drift along beneath their wings of their very own wearable butterfly.

Cica Ghost: Garden, May 2022

Garden is a simple, charming setting, where not even the trio of huge cats are out to cause trouble; instead, they are happy to converse with a little caterpillar who appears to have missed out on the opportunity to snooze its way to butterfly status in a chrysalis – and one of the moggies is even happy to have avatars take a seat on its back!

The other expression Cica’s description for Garden brought to mind is perhaps a little deeper:

Happiness is like a butterfly – the more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.
Cica Ghost: Garden, May 2022

Granted, this may well not be what Cica had in mind when writing her description for the installation, but it nevertheless fits her garden, because right now with all the bleakness of news and headlines surrounding us in the physical world, we could all do with a little happiness. With its charm, simplicity and plethora of careful inhabitants, Garden presents an opportunity to turn our attention away from the things that crowd our thoughts, allowing that happiness to settle on us like that butterfly alighting on our shoulder.

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