Continuing with Theme 4 of this June focus on the natural world – The earth, the sea and plant life – this post celebrates a poem by William Wordsworth on a small but significant flower…
Wordsworth celebrates this often overlooked beauty:
There is a Flower, the Lesser Celandine,
That shrinks, like many more, from cold and rain;
And, the first moment that the sun may shine,
Bright as the sun himself, ’tis out again!
He develops his meditation on the lesser celandine into a moral about ageing, strangely enough!
…I stopped, and said, with inly-muttered voice,
“It doth not love the shower, nor seek the cold:
This neither is its courage nor its choice,
But its necessity in being old.
“The sunshine may not cheer it, nor the dew;
It cannot help itself in its decay;
Stiff in its members, withered, changed of hue.”
And, in my spleen, I smiled that it was grey.
To be a Prodigal’s Favourite -then, worse truth,
A Miser’s Pensioner -behold our lot!
O Man, that from thy fair and shining youth
Age might but take the things Youth needed not!
The celandine does not bring to mind ageing for me, though I do like the way Wordsworth sees such a fragile beauty as this small flower as a symbol of endurance!
For me the celandine represents the hope of new life. Which in a way it does for Wordsworth, too.
A small and often unnoticed beauty.
Are you trying to notice small beauties in the natural world around you in the month of June?