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“The Shepherd’s Daffodil” – A Poem

Yellow is definitely the color of the month in my garden, and I suspect in yours.

daffodil meadow

Photo: Marie (raym5 on flickr)

A colorful meadow of daffodils.

March flowers seem to have a cool palette in keeping with the cool weather. While yellows, whites and blues predominate there are some rich purples and oranges to be seen among the dwarf iris and crocus. But yellow is definitely the color of the month in my garden, and I suspect in yours.

The daffodil, tossed around by the March winds, is clearly the flower of the month. This flower has been the subject of more spring poems across the centuries than any other flower. This poem by Elizabethan poet Michael Drayton is entitled “The Shepherd’s Daffodil.”

Shepherd, as thou cam’st this way
By yonder little hill
Or as thou through the fields didst stray,
Saw’st  thou my daffodil?

Through yonder vale as I did pass,
Descending from the hill,
I met a smiling bonny lass;
They call her Daffodil.

Whose presence, as along she went,
The pretty flowers did greet,
As though their heads they downward bent
With homage to her feet.

And all the shepherds that were nigh
From top of every hill,
Unto the valleys loud did cry
There goes sweet Daffodil.

The Complete Works of Michael Drayton, Volume 1
Elibron Classics Series
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The Complete Works of Michael Drayton, Volume 2
Elibron Classics Series
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Moya Andrews

, originally from Queensland, Australia, served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculties at Indiana University until 2004. In the same year, Moya began hosting Focus on Flowers for WFIU. In addition, Moya does interviews for Profiles, is a member of the Bloomington Hospital Board, and authored Perennials Short and Tall from Indiana University Press.

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