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“To Daffodils” – A Poem

We wait all winter for the daffodils to bloom in the spring.

Daffodils in bloom

Photo: Vince Alongi (flickr)

Daffodils in bloom.

The dwarf yellow daffodil “Tete-a-Tete” blooms early on short sturdy stems. “Ice Follies” is a bi-color, pale yellow and white daffodil that is an early full-size bloomer in my yard. The blossoms last longest in the garden when the temperatures stay cool. When we pick them and bring them inside they do not last as long, as they dry up in the heat and assume a parchment-type texture.

During this all too brief daffodil season I find myself trying to imprint the memory of how they look into my brain so I can remember them until they come again next year. Robert Herrick, in the poem “To Daffodils”, addresses the short time we have to savor their (and our) special flowering.

Fair daffodils, we weep to see
You haste away so soon;
As yet the early- rising sun
Has not attained his noon.
Stay, stay
Until the hasting day
Has run
But to the Even-song;
And having prayed together, we
Will go with you along.

We have short time to stay as you,
We have as short a spring;
As quick a growth to meet decay,
As you, or anything.
We die
As your hours do, and dry
Like to summer’s rain;
Or as the pearls of morning’s dew,
Ne’er to be found again.

Robert Herrick (Everyman Poetry #12)
Douglas Brooks-Davies, ed.
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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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