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Packets of sunshine

Daffodils from our garden - they are like rays of sunshine to me

Daffodils (1804)
by William Wordsworth (1770-1850)

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.

I love daffodils

My kitchen window in our new home overlooks a raised garden which had been mostly planted by the previous owners with bush roses and camellias. When we moved to this house my husband Lynsey decided to plant a large number of spring bulbs in the unoccupied soil beneath these established plants. I had no idea what bulbs he had planted and as each day dawns I am surprised by the flowers that bloom.

As I enter the kitchen these days I am greeted by a living bouquet of daffodils (one I don’t have to water thankfully). I can see them so clearly through the window even in the dark. Their golden glow illuminates no matter how dismal the light.

As Wordsworth wrote all those years ago “my heart with pleasure fills” as I look at, and think about, these packets of sunshine that greet me morning, noon and night. They are so bright and so strong. Not even the howling Wellington gusts have affected them. The daffodils always seem to stand there tall and proud. It is no wonder the New Zealand Cancer Society has adopted them as their symbol of hope.

We use the daffodil as our symbol as it is one of the first flowers of spring, whose bright yellow blooms remind us of the joys the new season will bring. It represents the hope there is for all those affected by cancer.

Every day there are more daffodils blooming in my garden. They are emerging all over the place. You just can’t help but feel good when you look at them. I have sunshine even when there appears to be none thanks to the gloomy, still wintry weather.

Funnily enough today is Tulip Sunday at the Wellington Botanical Gardens. This is traditionally a big event as part of the city’s Spring Festival. It somehow seems wrong to be talking about daffodils today. So here are a few images of the tulips from our garden that they are co-habiting with the daffodils. I also love them, especially the white tulip. It evokes a different feeling for me – one of peace and calm. It is the only white flower in that patch of the garden and it is like a candle burning brightly drawing me to it. It is so delicate and pure.

White tulip

Pink tulip

Purple tulip

The tulips and daffodils co-habiting in our garden

Draw strength from the simple beauty that is present before you.

Use all your senses (where practicable) as you experience your world; it helps you to feel alive.

Look with purpose. What are you seeing?

Touch it. Is it how you imagined it would be? What is it like?

Smell it. Is it pleasant or unpleasant? What does it remind you of?

Taste it. What is it like? Did it taste how you imagined it would?

Listen. What is going on around you? What can you hear? Have you heard that sound before?

What feelings does all this evoke in you? Ask yourself why you are feeling this.

Draw it, photograph it, write about it, use it to inspire you in some creative endeavour or just reflect on the moment. Gather inspiration and use it to guide you.

Finally, cherish that you have the ability to do all these things as not everyone can.

I am so thankful for these packets of sunshine. They are a reminder to me to smile and to be thankful for everything that is my life.

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2 Responses to “Packets of sunshine”

  1. on 25 Sep 2007 at 3:13 pm bronwynh

    these are beautiful photos and so clear. What sort of camera have you got? I have always loved Wordsworth’s poem about daffodils. i keep it on my pinboard by my desk at work.Your blog is inspiring.

  2. on 25 Sep 2007 at 11:28 pm Marica

    Hi Bron
    Thank you for taking the time to comment – I really appreciate it. My camera is a Fuji E900 (9.0 mega pixels). Guess who I got it through? Our fellow FllinNzer in Auckland! Lynsey has the model before this one and it is also fantastic. It is nothing flash but it does take good photos. It travels absolutely everywhere with me.
    Hope you are well and happy.

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