Ángela  |  She/Her

Mariposa de 56 KM

Racangua, Chile  |  Andean Valley & Mountains
Mediterranean Forests, Woodlands, and Scrub

Session 3: December 12, 2022

Lately I’ve been having a lot of nightmares. Like almost every night. And my subconscious is really present in my life. I often make decisions based on my dreams, whether it’s a nightmare or just a nice dream. And I wanted to share with you the most beautiful dream that I’ve had in my life, and how that has supported me as a person. It’s a story that comes from a dream. So.

Once I dreamt that I was in Leticia, a city on the edge of the Colombian Amazon, right by the border with Brazil and Peru. My friend Maytik was raised in Leticia, and I have always wished to travel there, so the first visit was through this dream.

I was at a birthday party in a cottage next to the Amazon River. The cottage had a small terrace that stood up with thin wooden columns. At the party, for some reason, I felt out of place, so I decided to go out to the terrace to take some fresh air. From the terrace, I could observe the river, sense the breathing trees, and hear the sounds of the night.

As I was contemplating the river in the dark, I noticed that there was an indigenous woman who was gently canoeing next to the shore. I saw that she was touching the leaves of a tree (she gestures, gently touching a leaf), followed by a small frog (gesture) and fireflies (gesture).  Every time she would touch them, they would glow for a moment in a beautiful, soft light. It was a blessing. She blessed in light everything that she touched.

I was so curious that I decided to come closer to the end of the terrace, lie down on my stomach, and stretch my arm down to the river. I wanted to see if she would come to touch my hand. She observed that I was there and slowly came to touch my hand that for a brief moment shone in the dark. I received a blessing together with the trees, frogs, and fireflies of the forest.

The next day, I decided to go canoeing with Maytik, my friend. She knew all the routes and the area. As we were canoeing, she was describing the different streams. Like: “You see over there? We can’t take that route because there are still mines and danger.” I would observe with awe how knowledgeable she was about the place. It made me feel safe. Then we stopped canoeing, she looked me straight in the eye with a glimpse of nostalgia in her face, and said “did you know that there are still 56 km-long butterflies in the Amazon?”

And I could not believe what she was saying. I thought to myself, like “What!? How is it possible that I did not know about this!? 56 km-long butterflies?!” The butterfly could not fit in my imagination, but still it was there somewhere in the vast Amazon, finding refuge in the forest that is left.

And when I woke up from this dream, I felt really blessed for the light and the 56 km-long butterfly pushing the boundaries of my imagination. But at the same time, I felt heartbroken and shaken by the certainty that there are thousands and millions of species that I don’t even know exist, forms of life that escape my imagination, and that are already threatened or extinct due to human action.

Since I had this dream, every time I have to speak up in front of a crowd as a climate activist and I want to feel grounded, I imagine that from my back there are two long butterfly wings that expand and connect with life on earth, life that is sacred and blessed with the touch of anyone who has the courage to face the environmental crisis, to speak up, and find ways to fight for climate justice and nature.

Loïca (Ángela) is a Chilean singer songwriter, climate justice activist and former spokesperson for Fridays For Future Chile. Music is her refuge to stay grounded, create sonic resilience, and fight climate devastation. She currently studies Global Music at Sibelius Academy, Finland and works for Roots project at Greenpeace International.