"Pay attention to the world." -- Susan Sontag

Pink, Red, and White Blooms (and One Colorful Camellia), on the First Day of Spring

From Upstream by Mary Oliver:

In the beginning I was so young and such a stranger to myself I hardly existed. I had to go out into the world and see it and hear it and react to it, before I knew at all who I was, what I was, what I wanted to be. Wordsworth studied himself and found the subject astonishing. Actually what he studied was his relationship to the harmonies and also the discords of the natural world. That’s what created the excitement….

One tree is like another tree, but not too much. One tulip is like the next tulip, but not altogether. More or less like people — a general outline, then the stunning individual strokes. Hello Tom, hello Andy. Hello Archibald Violet, and Clarissa Bluebell. Hello Lilian Willow, and Noah, the oak tree I have hugged and kissed every first day of spring for the last thirty years. And in reply its thousands of leaves tremble! What a life is ours!

“Doesn’t anybody in the world anymore want to get up in the middle of the night and sing?

From “The Prelude or, Growth of a Poet’s Mind” in Selected Poetry of William Wordsworth, edited by Mark Van Doren:

I saw the Spring return, and could rejoice….

If I ruled the world

The first day spring would be an international holiday, celebrated outdoors from dawn to dusk … and maybe all night long!


Enjoy the flowers!