The beauty of Spring Flowers

When I was in fourth grade, I think we had a poem reciting competition and I had memorised a poem from a 20 year old Wren and Martin that my mum and my aunt had used in school before that. The poem was about some flowers, and it was a very famous poem, but I was nine, and to me all that mattered was memorising it. I had never even seen the flowers, so I didn't really get it. So I memorised the poem. But it was so beautiful, that even to my 9 year old mind, it sounded so lyrical, so melodious, that I remembered the poem for years. Not the exact words naturally, but the beauty the words created, the image they brought to my mind. It doesn't talk about a place, but it takes you there anyway, to a large undulating field, with yellow flowers growing wild, dancing in the wind, inviting you to join them. So when I saw the flowers for real, I was nine again, reciting the poem in front of the entire school (and no, I don't remember if I won anything for it)
"I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils."
- William Wordsworth

Yellow Daffodils in DC

Daffodils in Central Park

 Peach Blossoms
I have seen food bloggers talk about lovely pink, blushing peaches that turn up in the market in the summer, but how come no one ever talks about the flowers!
Cherry Blossoms
 Have you heard of Hanami? It is the centuries old traditional Japanese custom of viewing the cherry blossoms. Cherry blossom viewing is a festival. It's celebrated with the same joy and enthusiasm as any other festival. The government and festival authorities track the weather to predict the exact dates of the flowering.  In Japan, people traditionally picnic under the trees, eating lunch and and in DC  a national festival celebrates the gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo in 1912. That history is just as fascinating. I mean, imagine, transporting three thousand trees, across oceans, in times when there was no air travel, very little technology and a limited means of communication.

Blooming cherry blossoms in DC
The incredible pink and white cherry blossoms from one of the few trees that I saw (flowering was delayed this year) in DC
Weeping cherry trees near Capitol Hill

Pretty in Pink
Is there a poem written about tulips? There should be. These pink ones potted in the centre of Times Square, bring the square so much beauty, I would go as far as saying that if you want to see Times Square at night for the lights, then you have to see Times Square by day, in Spring, for these flowers.


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