Thursday, 28 February 2008

The first primroses of Spring

- In dewy glades
The peering primrose, like sudden gladness
Gleams on the soul - yet unregarded fades -
The joy is ours, but all its own the sadness.
H. Coleridge
Seen today - while walking through Radnor Street Cemetery. This little hill-side cemetery has been mentioned several times on this blog as I live close by. It is used by local residents as access between Old Town and the town centre. Now designated as a Local Nature Reserve it is a haven for wild flowers, birds, badgers, foxes, squirrels and other small creatures.

The Primrose
Ask me why I send you here
This sweet Infanta of the year?
Ask me why I send to you
This primrose, thus bepearl'd with dew?
I will whisper to your ears:-
The sweets of love are mixed with tears.
(First verse of a poem by Robert Herrick 1591 - 1674)

Emblematic of early youth and innocence, the primrose in the language of flowers means 'believe me'. It is also known as Easter rose, Lent rose or (my favourite) golden stars.