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Ode{s} to the Flowers-a small collection of poetry

Updated on August 27, 2013

American lotus {Nelumbo Lutea}



As with my article 'Ode to the Birds' I can take no credit for the verses below, other than I have come across them in my research on the subject of plants. They are taken from various sources and various poets through the ages.

I have enjoyed reading them and as I share them with you, it is my hope that you will enjoy them too.

The Poems

To the Water lily---

" There the bright Water Lilies blow,

There stems with gorgeous blossoms crown'd'

'Mid shield like leaves that float around" { Bp.Mant}

" Oh, beautiful thou art,

Thou sculpture-like, and stately River Queen!

Crowning the depths, as with light serene,

Of a pure heart

Bright lily of the wave!

Rising with fearless grace with every swell,

Thou seam'st as if a spirit meekly brave

Dwelt in thy cell.

What is it like thee, fair flower,

The gentle and the firm? thus bearing up,

To the blue sky, that alabaster cup

As to the shower?

'Tis faith,-- Oh, is not faith

Like thee sweet Lily, springing into light,

Still buoyantly above the billow's might,

Through the storm's breath?

Yes, link'd with such high thought,

Flowers,let thine image in my bosom lie!

Till something there,of its own Purity

And peace be wrought" { Mrs Hemans


" Ah. mickle is the powerful grace that lies,

In Herbs, Plants, Stones; and their true qualities.

Within the infant rind of this small flower,

Poison hath residence, and med'cine power" {alludes to the Opium poppy}

"From the Poppy I have ta'en

Mortal balm, and mortal bane,

Juice, that creeping through the heart,

Deadens every sense of smart:-

Doomed to heal ,or doomed to kill,

Frought with good or frought with ill"--{ Mrs R.Robinson} --Opium poppy

" There, bright as gems of fairy lore,

Or Eastern poet's dreams,

The Horned Poppies gild the shore,

With sunny gleam" { unknown}

Water colour of poppies

Copyright Janet Blower
Copyright Janet Blower | Source

yellow corydalis

Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 unported license
Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 unported license | Source

To the Yellow Corydalis

" Iv'e seen thy sun-gilt flow,rets smile,

Upon the crumbling Tower,

As if designed to reconcile,

The past and present hour.

Ruin,-thou teachest us,- is more,

Than greatness past away,

Time's shadowy pinion hovering or'e,

And carrying decay.

heaven as it paints thy cheering hues,

Approve of that decay,

And bids us fix our eyes on views,

Which cannot pass away" { MS.T.T.}

" Call it not wasted the scent they lend,

To the breeze, when no step is nigh;

Oh, thus for ever, the earth should send,

Her grateful breath on high" { Wall flower-unknown}

Lines on the Wallflower, growing on the ruins of Pevensey Castle, May 13 {1850} Where King William the Conqueror landed in 1066.----

" Hail now that shed'st the smile of May,

On ruins hoary,

And crownest desolate decay,

With golden glory !

Where haughty banners hung of old,

The foeman braving,

Thy brazon bright, is o're the hold,

Triumphant waving.

Where culverin, or quarrel frowned,

Death , vengeance dealing;

Thou clim'st, and straight we feel around,

Soft fragrance stealing,

So World, above thy Babel wide,

The cross shall flourish,

E'en so,the ashes of thy pride,

God's plant shall nourish" { Anna J. Vidal }

Wall flowers

Gorse flowers



" By the breath of flowers,

Thou callest us from city throngs and cares,

Back to the woods, the birds, the mountain streams,

That sing of Thee! -back to free childhood's heart,

Fresh with the dews of tenderness! thou bidd'st

The lilies of the field with placid smile.

Reprove man's feverish strivings, and infuse

Through his worn soul a more unworldly life,

With their soft holy breath. Thou has not left,

His purer nature, with its fine desires,

Uncared for in this universe of Thine" { unknown}

" Am I not

In truth a favour'd plant ?

On me such bounty summer showers,

That I am cover'd o're with flowers !

And when the frost is in the sky,

My branches are so fresh and gay,

That you might look on me and say-

'This plant can never die'! " {About the Broom -unknown}

" The gorse is yellow upon the heath,

The banks with Speedwell flowers are gay,

The oak is budding, and beneath,

The hawthorn soon will wear the wreath,

The silver wreath of May " { unknown}

Cultivated flowers


Cultivating flowers

" How exquisitely sweet,

This rich display of flowers,-

This airy wild of fragrance,

So lovely to the eye,

And to the sense so sweet !"

" And round about he taught sweet flowers to grow" {unknown}


" A flowery crown will I compose -

I'll weave the Crocus, weave the Rose,

I'll weave Narcissus, newly wet,

The Hyacinthe and Violet;

The Myrtle shall supply me green,

And Lilies laugh in light between;

That the rich tendrils of my beauty's hair,

May burst into their crowning flowers, and light the painted air " { unknown}

Cultivated Lily



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    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 4 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Eddy, thank you the site is updated almost weekly. you are a welcome member. Best wishes to you and your little corner of Wales.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      You are so welcome and I have re-joined your website too. It is a wonderful place to explore ;I loved it.

      Have a great weekend.


    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 4 years ago from Lancashire north west England


      Hi Eddy, thank you,and for the vote up. You are always welcome here. Best wishes to you.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Beautiful from start to finish.

      Loved it and voted up.


    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 4 years ago from Lancashire north west England


      Hi Deb, you are so right and your final words should be part of a poem. Glad you enjoyed them as much as I did . Best wishes to you.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I really enjoyed these poems written to and for flowers. Flowers are the epitome of sun in darkness.