Poesie: March Thoughts

Daffy-down-dilly is come up to town, / In her yellow petticoat and her green gown.

When daffodils begin to peer,
With hey the doxy over the dale,
Why then comes in the sweet of the year
And the red blood reigns in the winter’s pale.

~ William Shakespeare (1564 – 1616)

daffodils - Edited

And hark! How blithe the Throstle sings,
He, too, is no mean preacher;
Come forth into the light of things,
Let Nature be your teacher.

~ William Wordsworth (1770 – 1850)

march eggs

And the Spring arose on the garden fair,
like the Spirit of Love felt everywhere;
And each flower and herb on Earth’s dark breast
Rose from the dreams of its wintry rest.
The snowdrop and then the violet,
Arose from the ground with warm rain wet;
And their breath was mixed with sweet-odour sent
from the turf like the voice and the instrument.

~ Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 – 1822)

violets shelley

All poems and drawings are taken from Edith Holden’s “The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady”, first published in 1977.  A delightful book!

August Is Here!

Sweet August doth appear!

Welcome to the Harvest Month!

Fairest of months!  ripe Summer’s Queen
The hey-day of the year
With robes that gleam with sunny sheen,
Sweet August doth appear.

~ Rev. Combe Miller (1745–1814)

Have a look at the August sky.  We took the picture from a post on The Old Farmer’s Almanac.

skymap_august2018

They also provided this printable sky map, just in case you want it on paper so you can take it outside when you go star gazing.  Don’t you love star gazing?  We sure do!

edith august cropped

 

Edith Holden loved August flowers, but she also mentions the dark side of August, primarily the thunderstorms.  The poem below closes her chapter on August in her “Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady“, and it is a sad one indeed.  Our oldest daughter loved it, and so she typed it out for y’all to enjoy:

Golden Rowan of Menolowan
‘She lived where the mountains go down to the sea,

And river and tide confer,
Golden Rowan of Menolowan,
Was the name they gave to her.

She had the soul no circumstance,
Can hurry or defer,
Golden Rowan of Menolowan,
How time stood still for her!

Her playmates for their lovers grew,
But that shy wanderer,
Golden Rowan of Menolowan,
Knew love was not for her.

Hers was the love of wilding things,
To hear a squirrel chirr,
In the golden rowan of Menolowan
Was joy enough for her.

She sleeps on the hill with the lonely sun,
Where in the days that were,
The golden rowan of Menolowan,
So often shadowed her.

The scarlet fruit will come to fill,
The scarlet spray to stir,
The golden rowan of Menolowan,
And wake no dream for her.

Only the wind is over her grave,
For mourner and comforter,
And ‘Golden Rowan of Menolowan”
Is all we know of her. 

by Bliss Carmen (1861 – 1929)

It appears as though Mr. Carman, whose name dear Edith seems to have misspelled, was a true poet who loved poetry for the sake of its beauty, and did not sacrifice his talent on the altar of Mammon.  It was said about him that “he never attempted to secure his income by novel writing, popular journalism, or non-literary employment.  He remained a poet, supplementing his art with critical commentaries on literary ideas, philosophy, and aesthetics.”  And reading tours, it would seem.

The other two girls just found “Tiny Toad” – look, isn’t she the cutest little thing?  She’s not much bigger than my thumbnail!

toad

Lastly, our maple and sour gum trees are producing some pretty, colorful leaves already.  Featured is a picture of a maple leaf one of our girls found and took today.

 

June with Edith

A dripping June keeps all in tune.

Edith Holden June

Why will your mind forever go
To meads in sunny Greece?
Our songbirds have a fine a flow,
Our sheep as fair a fleece;
Among our hills the honey-bee,
And int he leaning pear –
I tell you there is Arcady
In leafy Warwickshire.

~ Norman Gale

In other words:  The grass only looks greener on the other side of the fence.  While we are not in the Bard’s own -shire, we are in our own little Shire here in NE Ohio, and with June come all the beauties of early summer.  The Dog Roses and Yellow Iris are about done blossoming already because the winter was very mild, but our hedge has just started.  It’s little white blossoms have a fragrance similar to jasmine, so I am assuming it is of the same family.  Baby bunnies are already hopping everywhere, the first brood of robins is about to leave the nest, the young sparrows are on the wing already and Mrs. Myrtle Warbler has three eggs to keep warm at this point in time.  She has built her nest in said sweet-smelling hedge and used primarily hair from our big white pup…  Must be comfy!

Mother Warbler

Note:  The drawing and quote are taken from Edith Holden’s “The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady”.  If ever you were looking for a good example of a nature journal, or wanted to motivate your own young ladies to start notebooking, this is a wonderful book to refer to.  Besides, it is full of beautiful poetry and interesting information, presented in outstanding penmanship.

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