Three poems about Ranunculus ficaria, written by William Wordsworth

Poem 1
Poem 2
Poem 3


To the Small Celandine (1802, 1807)

Pansies, lillies, kingcups, daisies,
Let them live upon their praises;
Long as there's a sun that sets,
Primroses will have their glory,
Long as there are violets,
They will have a place in story:
There is a flower that shall be mine,
'T is the little Celandine.

Eyes of some men travel far
For the finding of a start;
Up and down the heavens they go,
Men that keep a mightkly rout !
I'm as great as they, I trouw,
Since the day I found thee out,
Little Flower ! — I'll make a stir,
Like a sage astronomer.

Modest, yet withal an Elf
Bold and lavish of thyself;
Since we needs must first have met
I have seen thee, high and low,
Thirty years or more, and yet
'T was a face I did not know;
Thou hast now, go where I may
Fifty greetings in a day.

Ere a leaf in on a bush,
In the time before the thrush
Has a thought about her nest
THou wilt come with half a call,
Spreading out thy glossy breast
Like a careless Prodigal;
Telling tales about the sin,
When we've little warmth, or none.

Poets, vain men in their mood !
Travel with teh multitude:
Never heed them: I aver
That they all are wanton wooeers
But the thrifty cottager
Who stirs little out of doors,
Joys to spy thee near her home;
Spring is coming, Thou art come !

Comfort have thou of thy merit,
Kindly, unassuming Spirit !
Careless of thy neighbourhood,
Thou dost show they pleasant face
On the moor and in the wood,
In the lane; — there's not a place,
Howsoever mean it be,
But 't is good enough for thee.

I'll befall the yellow flowers,
Children of the flaring hours!
Buttercups, that will be seen,
Whether we will see or no;
Others, too, of lofty mien;
They have done as worldlings do,
Taken praise that should be thine,
Little, humble, Celandine !

Prophet of delight and mirth,
Ill-requited upon earth;
Herald of a mightly band,
Of a joyous train ensuing,Serving at my heart's command,
Tasks that are no tasks renewing,
I will sing, as doth behove,
Hymns in praise of what I love.

Poem 1
Poem 2
Poem 3

To the same flower (1802, 1807)

Pleasures newly found are sweet
When they lie about our feet:
February last, my heart
First at sight of thee was glad;
All unheard of as thou art,
Thou must needs, I think, have had,
Celandine ! and liong ago
Praise of which I nothing know.

I have not a doubt but he,
Whosoe'er the man might be,
Who the first with pointed rays
(Workman worthy to eb sainted)
Set the sign-board in a blaze,
When the raising sun he painted
Too the fancy froma glance
At the glittering counternance.

Soon as gentle breezes bring
News of winter's vanishing,
And the children build theu bowers,
Sticking 'kerchief-plots of mould
All about with full-blown flowers,
Thick as sheep in shepherd's fold !
With the poudest thou aart there,
Mantling in the tiny square.

Often have I sighed to emasure
By myself a lonely pleasure
Sighed to think, I read a book
Only read, perhaps, by me;
Yet I long could overlook
Thy bright coronet and Thee,
And thye bright-coronet and Thee,
And thy arch and wily ways,
Any thy store of other priase.

Blithe of heart, from week to week
Thou dost play at hide-and-seek;
Wile the patient primrose sits
Like abeggar in the cold,
Thou, a flower of wiser wits,
Slipp'st into thy sheltering hold;
Liveliest of the vernal train
When ye all are out again.

Drawn by what peculiar spell
By what charm of sight or smell,
Does the dim-eyed curious Bee,
Labouring for her waxen cells,
Fondly settle upon Thee
Prized above all buds and bells
Opening daily at thy side
By the seasons multiplied?
Thou aare not beyone the moon,
But a thing "beneath out shoon:"
Let the bold Discoverer thrid
In his bark the polar sea;
Reaar who will a pyramid;
Praise it is enough for me,
If there be but three or four
Who love my little Flower.

Poem 1
Poem 2
Poem 3

The Small Celandine (1804, 1807)

There is a Flower, the lesser Celandine,
That shrinks, like many more, from cold an rain;
And the first moment that the sun may shine,
Bright as the sun himself, 't is out again!
When hailstones have been falling, swarm on swarm,
Or blasts the green field and the trees distrest,
Oft have I seen it muffled up from harm,
In close self-shelter, like a THing at rest.

But lately, one rough daat, this FLower I passe
And recognised it, though and latered form,
Now standing forth an offering to the blast,
And buffeted at will by rain and storm.

I stopped, and said with inly - muttered voice,
"It doth not live the shower, nor seek the cold:
This niether is its courage nor its choice,
But its necessity in being old.

"The sunshine many not cheer it, nor the dew;
It cannot help itself in its decay;
Stiff in its memebers, 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 Manm that from thy fair and shining youth
Age might but take the things Youth needed not!

Poem 1
Poem 2
Poem 3

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Lesser Celandine