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Flower Poems


Table of Contents

Types of Flowers

  1. To the Cornflower by Annette Wynne
  2. The Anemone by Hannah Flagg Gould
  3. My Lady Anemone by John Jarvis Holden
  4. Columbine by John Burroughs
  5. The Columbine by Jones Very
  6. The Bluebells of New England by Thomas Bailey Aldrich
  7. The Bluebell by Anonymous
  8. Blue Hyacinths by Adelaide Crapsey
  9. The Blue Gentians by Edward Ryan Woodle
  10. Fringed Gentian by Emily Dickinson
  11. Song of the Morning-Glories by John B. Tabb
  12. The Song of the Morning Glories by Isadore Baker
  13. Purple Clover by Emily Dickinson
  14. The Wild Honeysuckle by Philip Freneau
  15. The Ground Laurel by Hannah Flagg Gould
  16. The Lost Hyacinth by Hannah Flagg Gould
  17. The Little Harebell by Anonymous
  18. The Crocus's Soliloquy by Hannah Flagg Gould
  19. My nosegays are for captives by Emily Dickinson
  20. Neighbor Chickory by Anonymous
  21. The Ghost-yard of the Goldenrod by Bliss Carman
  22. Spear Thistle by John Clare
  23. Bloodroot by Bliss Carman
  24. A Lotus Bloom by John B. Tabb
  25. Hepatica by John Burroughs
  26. The Narcissus by Raymond Garfield Dandridge
  27. Red Carnations by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  28. Milkweed by Helen Hunt Jackson

Spring Flowers

  1. The Waking Year by Emily Dickinson
  2. May-Flower by Emily Dickinson
  3. The Sleeping Flowers by Emily Dickinson
  4. Resurrection by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts
  5. The Jonquil by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts

More Poems About Flowers

  1. With Flowers by Emily Dickinson
  2. Roadside Flowers by Bliss Carman
  3. The Bee and the Blossoms by John B. Tabb
  4. The Fear of Flowers by John Clare
  5. The Seedling by Laurence Dunbar
  6. Pretty Flower by Raymond Garfield Dandridge
  7. The White Flower by Hannah Flagg Gould
  8. The Flowers in the Cemetery by Hannah Flagg Gould
  9. With a Flower by Emily Dickinson
  10. To The Bee Balm by John Burroughs
  11. The Cardinal Flower by John Burroughs
  12. Seed-Time by John B. Tabb
  13. Song by Emily Dickinson
  14. A Cavalcade by John B. Tabb
  15. As children bid the guest good-night by Emily Dickinson
  16. Possession by Emily Dickinson
  17. With a Flower by Emily Dickinson
  18. The Autumn Thistles by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts
  19. Flowers by F.J. Schwab
  20. The Prostrate Pink by Hannah Flagg Gould
  21. The Death of the Flowers by William Cullen Bryant
  22. A Laughing Chorus by Anonymous
  23. Trailing Arbutus by John Greenleaf Whittier
  24. The Reunion of the Flowers by Kate Slaughter McKinney
  25. Contentment by John E. Everett
  26. White Foxglove by Grace Hazard Conkling

Types of Flowers

  1. To the Cornflower

    by Annette Wynne

    How smiling, how wondering, the cornflower's eyes,
    Looking at me joyously in flower-surprise,
    Glad as June's sunshine, bright as her skies.
    Let me have and hold you all the day through,
    Darling little comrade, blue as bluest blue,
    You're the sky's own sister, yet I can play with you;
    You're the sky's own sister, but you're better than a star,
    For you live right down here with me, and not so high and far.

  2. The Anemone

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    Thy charm, pale, modest, timid one,
    Is this, that thou dost ever shun
    The public walk, and to the sun
    Dost show an open heart,
    Which does not fear the brightest ray,
    That's darted from the eye of day,
    Will aught of secret stain betray,
    Or find a double part.

    And thou hast never been beguiled
    To quit the simple, quiet wild,
    Where nature placed her modest child
    To worship her alone.
    Thou dost not ask the brow of toil
    To shed its costly dew, to spoil
    The bed of flee, untortured soil,
    Which thou hast made thine own.

    And now, if I were hence to take
    Thee, root and stem, it would but make
    Thee homesick—and the spell would break,
    That's round the desert gem.
    So, I will set me down and look
    On thy fair leaves, my little book,
    To read the name of Him, who took
    Such care in forming them!

  3. My Lady Anemone

    by John Jarvis Holden

    Beneath soft snows harsh winter lingering
    Takes stand, betimes, against th' advancing spring
    To find itself betrayed before its flight —
    Within their midst that daintiest eremite,
    Th' anemone, dear April's solacing.

    Rare this, but rarer note doth nature ring
    When silvery locks, time's counterfeits, soft cling
    About a visage pink with vernal light
    Beneath soft snows!

    What lovelier fancy can she set a-wing?
    Here rifted age holds youth in th' opening;
    Here wisdom's hoary poll, in sweet despite,
    Is set to crown a face of pure delight —
    The wind-flower face I all too faintly sing
    Beneath soft snows.

  4. Columbine

    by John Burroughs

    I strolled along the beaten way,
    Where hoary cliffs uprear their heads,
    And all the firstlings of the May
    Were peeping from their leafy beds,
    When, dancing in its rocky frame,
    I saw th' columbine's flower of flame.

    Above a lichened niche it clung,
    Or did it leap from out a seam?—
    Some hidden fire had found a tongue
    And burst to light with vivid gleam.
    It thrilled the eye, it cheered the place,
    And gave the ledge a living grace.

    The redstart flashing up and down,
    The oriole whistling in the elm,
    The kinglet with his ruby crown—
    All wear the colors of thy realm;
    And starling, too, with glowing coals—
    So shine thy lamps by oak-tree boles.

    I saw them a-flaming
    Against the gray rocks;
    I saw them in couples,
    I saw them in flocks.
    They danced in the breezes,
    They glowed in the sun,
    They nodded and beckoned,
    Rejoiced every one.

    Some grew by the wayside,
    Some peered from the ledge,
    Some flamed from a crevice,
    And clung like a wedge;
    Some rooted in débris
    Of rocks and of trees,
    And all were inviting
    The wild banded bees.

    Nature knows well the use of foils,
    And knoweth how to recompense;
    There lurks a grace in all her toils
    And in her ruder elements;
    And oft doth gleam a tenderness
    The eye to charm, the ear to bless.

  5. The Columbine

    by Jones Very

    Still, still my eye will gaze long fixed on thee,
    Till I forget that I am called a man,
    And at thy side fast-rooted seem to be,
    And the breeze comes my cheek with thine to fan.
    Upon this craggy hill our life shall pass,
    A life of summer days and summer joys,
    Nodding our honey-bells mid pliant grass
    In which the bee half hid his time employs;
    And here we'll drink with thirsty pores the rain,
    And turn dew-sprinkled to the rising sun,
    And look when in the flaming west again
    His orb across the heaven its path has run;
    Here left in darkness on the rocky steep,
    My weary eyes shall close like folding flowers in sleep.

  6. The Bluebells of New England

    by Thomas Bailey Aldrich

    The roses are a regal troop,
    And modest folk the daisies;
    But, Bluebells of New England,
    To you I give my praises—

    To you, fair phantoms in the sun,
    Whom merry Spring discovers,
    With bluebirds for your laureates,
    And honey-bees for lovers.

    The south-wind breathes, and lo! you throng
    This rugged land of ours:
    I think the pale blue clouds of May
    Drop down, and turn to flowers!

    By cottage doors along the roads
    You show your winsome faces,
    And, like the spectre lady, haunt
    The lonely woodland places.

    All night your eyes are closed in sleep,
    Kept fresh for day's adorning:
    Such simple faith as yours can see
    God's coming in the morning!

    You lead me by your holiness
    To pleasant ways of duty;
    You set my thoughts to melody,
    You fill me with your beauty.

    Long may the heavens give you rain,
    The sunshine its caresses,
    Long may the woman that I love
    Entwine you in her tresses!

  7. The Bluebell

    by Anonymous

    There is a story I have heard—
    A poet learned it of a bird,
    And kept its music every word—

    A story of a dim ravine,
    O'er which the towering tree tops lean,
    With one blue rift of sky between;

    And there, two thousand years ago,
    A little flower as white as snow
    Swayed in the silence to and fro.

    Day after day, with longing eye,
    The floweret watched the narrow sky,
    And fleecy clouds that floated by.

    And through the darkness, night by night,
    One gleaming star would climb the height,
    And cheer the lonely floweret's sight.

    Thus, watching the blue heavens afar,
    And the rising of its favorite star,
    A slow change came—but not to mar;

    For softly o'er its petals white
    There crept a blueness, like the light
    Of skies upon a summer night;

    And in its chalice, I am told,
    The bonny bell was formed to hold
    A tiny star that gleamed like gold.

    Now, little people, sweet and true,
    I find a lesson here for you
    Writ in the floweret's bell of blue:

    The patient child whose watchful eye
    Strives after all things pure and high,
    Shall take their image by and by.

  8. Blue Hyacinths

    by Adelaide Crapsey

    In your
    Curled petals what ghosts
    Of blue headlands and seas,
    What perfumed immortal breath sighing
    Of Greece.

  9. The Blue Gentians

    by Edward Ryan Woodle

    The fairest blossoms ever bloom the last;
    For fleeting Summer, Mother of the flowers,
    Mindful her joyous, sunny reign will soon be past,
    Has deemed that, moved by beauties brighter, rarer,
    The Chill Destroyer of her happy hours
    Might step, perchance, aside and so would spare her.

    With fond, regretful eyes and saddened pride
    Upon her fragrant footprints back she looks
    Where bloomed the violets and the wild rose gleamed and died;
    And at the living gaze the murmurs run
    Through dells and vales, by rills and dancing brooks,
    Of blossoms laughing in the autumn sun.

    Their petals twist at morn and tipped with dew
    To warm noon yield and lift a fringe-lipped and
    Pure sapphired chalice of that deep and richer hue
    Than tint of sky or sea, beyond compare,
    That sprang to view when God first laid His hand
    Upon the cloud and left the rainbow there.

    They are the Gentians, left alone to face
    The unrelenting King of Snow and Rime
    By Summer fled and gone; these blossoms fit to grace
    The wondrous gardens washed by southern seas,
    Flung as a hostage to the Wintry Time,
    Bend, droop, and wither in the frosty breeze.

  10. Fringed Gentian

    by Emily Dickinson

    God made a little gentian;
    It tried to be a rose
    And failed, and all the summer laughed.
    But just before the snows
    There came a purple creature
    That ravished all the hill;
    And summer hid her forehead,
    And mockery was still.
    The frosts were her condition;
    The Tyrian would not come
    Until the North evoked it.
    "Creator! shall I bloom?"

  11. Song of the Morning-Glories

    by John B. Tabb

    We wedded each a star, —
    A warrior true,
    That plighted faith afar
    In drops of dew.

    But comes the cruel Dawn:
    The dew is dry;
    And we, our lovers gone,
    Lamenting, die.

  12. The Song of the Morning Glories

    by Isadore Baker

    So faintly flushing, freshly fair—
    Born of the dawn and dew,
    They seem but blossoms of the air—
    Of sky-ethereal hue.

    The pink and while of sunset cloud,
    The blue of firmament;
    They toll their sweetness slowly, low,
    As some rare instrument.

    Didst hear these elfln bugles blow
    The music of the spheres,
    Didst hear these wind-stirred bells a-chime
    In morn of summer years?

    The poor man's roses. Thus they bloom
    In lone and lowly places,
    And peep behind the lattice bars
    Like wistful baby faces.

    La France may boast her fleur-de-lis,
    And Erin isle, the clover;
    Or England cherish "eyes-of-day,"
    And Egypt lotus lover.

    But edelweiss, or thistle-bloom,
    Though known to song and story,
    Hath ne'er the grace, nor winsome face,
    Of New World morning glory.

    Ephemeral—yet each new day
    Hath gift as fair in waiting,
    No loss of vital chemic force
    If death be new creating.

    Red, white and blue, thy colors true
    In flag or blossom tender,
    In glow of star, or crimson bar,
    In art or nature's splendor.

    O poet, sing this flower of song,
    As Cambridge bard of fleur-de-lis,
    The iris by the river marge,
    Or golden lily of the lea.

    Bloom on! O glory of the morn,
    Guest of the passing hour,
    Thou art to kindred beauty born,
    Though but a summer flower.

  13. Purple Clover

    by Emily Dickinson

    There is a flower that bees prefer,
    And butterflies desire;
    To gain the purple democrat
    The humming-birds aspire.

    And whatsoever insect pass,
    A honey bears away
    Proportioned to his several dearth
    And her capacity.

    Her face is rounder than the moon,
    And ruddier than the gown
    Of orchis in the pasture,
    Or rhododendron worn.

    She doth not wait for June;
    Before the world is green
    Her sturdy little countenance
    Against the wind is seen,

    Contending with the grass,
    Near kinsman to herself,
    For privilege of sod and sun,
    Sweet litigants for life.

    And when the hills are full,
    And newer fashions blow,
    Doth not retract a single spice
    For pang of jealousy.

    Her public is the noon,
    Her providence the sun,
    Her progress by the bee proclaimed
    In sovereign, swerveless tune.

    The bravest of the host,
    Surrendering the last,
    Nor even of defeat aware
    When cancelled by the frost.

  14. White Clover

    by Helen Hunt Jackson

    In myriad snowy chalices of sweet
    Thou spread'st by dusty ways a banquet fine,
    So fine that vulgar crowds of it no sign
    Observe; nay, trample it beneath their feet.
    O, dainty and unsullied one! no meet
    Interpretation I of thee divine,
    Although all summer long I quaff thy wine,
    And never pass thee but to reverent greet,
    And pause in wonder at the miracle
    Of thee, so fair, and yet so meekly low.
    Mayhap thou art a saintly Princess, vowed,
    In token of some grief which thee befell,
    This pilgrimage of ministry to go,
    And never speak thy lineage aloud!

  15. The Wild Honeysuckle

    by Philip Freneau

    Fair flower, that dost so comely grow,
    Hid in this silent, dull retreat,
    Untouched thy honied blossoms blow,
    Unseen thy little branches greet:
    No roving foot shall crush thee here,
    No busy hand provoke a tear.

    By Nature’s self in white arrayed,
    She bade thee shun the vulgar eye,
    And planted here the guardian shade,
    And sent soft waters murmuring by;
    Thus quietly thy summer goes,
    Thy days declining to repose.

    Smit with those charms, that must decay,
    I grieve to see your future doom;
    They died—nor were those flowers more gay,
    The flowers that did in Eden bloom;
    Unpitying frosts and Autumn’s power
    Shall leave no vestige of this flower.

    From morning suns and evening dews
    At first thy little being came;
    If nothing once, you nothing lose,
    For when you die you are the same;
    The space between is but an hour,
    The frail duration of flower.

  16. The Ground Laurel

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    I Love thee, pretty nursling
    Of vernal sun and rain;
    For thou art Flora's firstling,
    And leadest in her train.

    When far away I found thee
    It was an April morn;
    The chilling blast blew round thee,
    No bud had decked the thorn.

    And thou alone wert hiding
    The mossy rocks between,
    Where, just below them gliding,
    The Merrimack was seen.

    And while my hand was brushing
    The seary leaves from thee,
    It seemed that thou wert blushing
    To be disclosed to me.

    So modest, fair and fragrant,
    Where all was wild and rude,
    To cheer the lonely vagrant
    Who crossed thy solitude,—

    Thou didst reward my ramble
    By shining at my feet,
    When, over brake and bramble,
    I sought thy lone retreat,—

    As some sweet flower of pleasure
    Upon our path may bloom,
    'Mid rocks and thorns that measure
    Our journey to the tomb!

  17. The Lost Hyacinth

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    My hyacinth, my hyacinth
    At length has come to light!
    And round the stalk and purple buds
    The leaves are green and bright!

    Renewed in beauty it has broke
    From out the crumbling earth;
    And, when I thought it dead and gone,
    It has another birth!

    My hyacinth! my hyacinth!
    At last I've found thee out.
    Oh! where hast thou been hid so long?
    What hast thou been about?

    "I've been," the little hermit said,
    "Within my lowly cell;
    And joy I've had in quiet there,
    That tongue can never tell.

    "In sweet communion with the power
    To which alone I trust,
    I've worshipped long at nature's shrine,
    Abased below the dust.

    "This upper world I find a scene
    Of peril, change and strife;
    And from seclusion I must draw
    My sweetest draught of life.

    "I would not live, if ever thus,
    Uncovered to the glare
    Of yonder sun, I must be brushed
    By ev'ry vagrant air.

    "'T is best for me, and best for thee
    That I should pass from sight,
    To be a while in loneliness,
    And hidden from the light.

    "For I should lose my greatest worth
    By being always here;
    Thou would'st not feel the joy thou hast
    To see me re-appear.

    "From calm and humble solitude
    My first attractions flow,
    And, but for these, I were but poor,
    Without a charm to show.

    "But I've come back to stand a while
    In beauty to thine eye;
    And when my flowers have gladdened thee,
    They'll be content to die.

    "And, while thy hyacinth her sweets
    Shall pour from every bell,
    Remember she her fragrance gained
    Within the lowly cell!"

  18. The Little Harebell

    by Anonymous

    "Tell me, little harebell,
    Are you lonely here.
    Blooming in the shadow
    On this rock so drear?"

    "Clinging to this bit of earth,
    As if in mid-air,
    With your sweet face turned to me,
    Looking strangely fair?"

    "Lady" said the harebell,
    Nodding low its head,
    "Though this spot seem dreary,
    Thought the sunlight's fled.

    "Know that I'm not lonely
    That I ne'er despair.
    God is in the shadow
    God is everywhere."

  19. The Crocus's Soliloquy

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    Down in my solitude under the snow,
    Where nothing cheering can reach me;
    Here, without light to see how to grow,
    I'll trust to nature to teach me.

    I will not despair, nor be idle, nor frown,
    Locked in so gloomy a dwelling;
    My leaves shall run up, and my roots shall run down,
    While the bud in my bosom is swelling.

    Soon as the frost will get out of my bed,
    From this cold dungeon to free me,
    I will peer up with my little bright head;
    All will be joyful to see me.

    Then from my heart will young petals diverge,
    As rays of the sun from their focus;
    I from the darkness of earth will emerge
    A happy and beautiful Crocus!

    Gaily arrayed in my yellow and green,
    When to their view I have risen,
    Will they not wonder how one so serene
    Came from so dismal a prison?

    Many, perhaps, from so simple a flower
    This little lesson may borrow—
    Patient to-day, through its gloomiest hour,
    We come out the brighter to-morrow!

  20. My nosegays are for captives

    by Emily Dickinson

    My nosegays are for captives;
    Dim, long-expectant eyes,
    Fingers denied the plucking,
    Patient till paradise,

    To such, if they should whisper
    Of morning and the moor,
    They bear no other errand,
    And I, no other prayer.

  21. Neighbor Chickory

    by Amos Russel Wells

    Where the stamping horses pass
    And the dust is in the grass,
    By the roadside bare and hot
    Gracing each unlovely spot
    Lo! before our weary eyes
    Shines the blue of summer skies

    Gleaming like an azure star
    Where the fiercest sunbeams are,
    Neighbor Chickory bestows
    Such a sense of cool repose,
    In the noon-tide's hottest glare
    It is always evening there.

    Oh, to learn the conquering grace
    Of that blossom's tender face!
    Thus victoriously may I
    Where the choking dust-clouds fly
    And life's clamors never cease
    Bring the cooling sense of peace.

  22. The Ghost-yard of the Goldenrod

    by Bliss Carman

    When the first silent frost has trod
    The ghost-yard of the goldenrod,

    And laid the blight of his cold hand
    Upon the warm autumnal land,

    And all things wait the subtle change
    That men call death, is it not strange

    That I —without a care or need,
    Who only am an idle weed —

    Should wait unmoved, so frail, so bold,
    The coming of the final cold!

  23. Spear Thistle

    by John Clare

    Where the broad sheepwalk bare and brown
    [Yields] scant grass pining after showers,
    And winds go fanning up and down
    The little strawy bents and nodding flowers,
    There the huge thistle, spurred with many thorns,
    The suncrackt upland's russet swells adorns.

    Not undevoid of beauty there they come,
    Armed warriors, waiting neither suns nor showers,
    Guarding the little clover plots to bloom
    While sheep nor oxen dare not crop their flowers
    Unsheathing their own knobs of tawny flowers
    When summer cometh in her hottest hours.

    The pewit, swopping up and down
    And screaming round the passer bye,
    Or running oer the herbage brown
    With copple crown uplifted high,
    Loves in its clumps to make a home
    Where danger seldom cares to come.

    The yellowhammer, often prest
    For spot to build and be unseen,
    Will in its shelter trust her nest
    When fields and meadows glow with green;
    And larks, though paths go closely bye,
    Will in its shade securely lie.

    The partridge too, that scarce can trust
    The open downs to be at rest,
    Will in its clumps lie down, and dust
    And prune its horseshoe-circled breast,
    And oft in shining fields of green
    Will lay and raise its brood unseen.

    The sheep when hunger presses sore
    May nip the clover round its nest;
    But soon the thistle wounding sore
    Relieves it from each brushing guest,
    That leaves a bit of wool behind,
    The yellowhammer loves to find.

    The horse will set his foot and bite
    Close to the ground lark's guarded nest
    And snort to meet the prickly sight;
    He fans the feathers of her breast—
    Yet thistles prick so deep that he
    Turns back and leaves her dwelling free.

    Its prickly knobs the dews of morn
    Doth bead with dressing rich to see,
    When threads doth hang from thorn to thorn
    Like the small spinner's tapestry;
    And from the flowers a sultry smell
    Comes that agrees with summer well.

    The bee will make its bloom a bed,
    The humble bee in tawny brown;
    And one in jacket fringed with red
    Will rest upon its velvet down
    When overtaken in the rain,
    And wait till sunshine comes again.

    And there are times when travel goes
    Along the sheep tracks' beaten ways,
    Then pleasure many a praise bestows
    Upon its blossoms' pointed rays,
    When other things are parched beside
    And hot day leaves it in its pride.

  24. Bloodroot

    by Bliss Carman

    When April winds arrive
    And the soft rains are here,
    Some morning by the roadside
    These Fairy folk appear.

    We never see their coming,
    However sharp our eyes;
    Each year as if by magic
    They take us by surprise.

    Along the ragged woodside
    And by the green spring-run,
    Their small white heads are nodding
    And twinkling in the sun.

    They crowd across the meadow
    In innocence and mirth,
    As if there were no sorrow
    In all this wondrous earth.

    So frail, so unregarded, And yet about them clings A sorcery of welcome,— The joy of common things.

    Perhaps their trail of beauty Across the pasture sod In jubilant procession Is where an angel trod.

  25. A Lotus Bloom

    by John B. Tabb

    Was the dream thou wovest me,
    But a blossom-fantasy?
    When it faded from my brain,
    Flushed it into flower again?

    When thy blossom withereth —
    When the fairer flower of Death
    Weaves its vision — shall the dream
    Mine or thine, returning, seem?

  26. Hepatica

    by John Burroughs

    When April's in her genial mood,
    And leafy smells are in the wood,
    In sunny nook, by bank or brook,
    Behold this lovely sisterhood.

    A spirit sleeping in the mould,
    And tucked about by leafage old,
    Opens an eye blue as the sky,
    And trusting takes the sun or cold.

    Before a leaf is on the tree,
    Or booms the roving bumblebee,
    She hears a voice, "Arise, rejoice!"
    In furry vestments cometh she.

    Before the oven-bird has sung,
    Or thrush or chewmk found a tongue,
    She ventures out and looks about,
    And once again the world is young.

    Sometimes she stands in white array,
    Sometimes as pink as dawning day,
    Or every shade of azure made,
    And oft with breath as sweet as May.

    Sometimes she bideth all alone,
    And lifts her face beside a stone,—
    A child at play along the way,
    When all her happy mates have flown.

    Again in bands she beams around,
    And brightens all the Uttered ground,
    And holds the gaze in leafless ways—
    A concert sweet without a sound.

    Like robin's song or bluebird's wing,
    Or throats that make the marshes ring,
    Her beaming face and winsome grace
    Are greetings from the heart of spring.

  27. The Narcissus

    by Raymond Garfield Dandridge

    Seemingly dead, bent, brown and dried,
    Unnoticed on yon shelf, she lay;
    Until a voice within her cried,
    "Awake! 'tis Ressurrection Day."

    A slender blade of palest green
    From her inner soul crept out,
    Timid, fearful to be seen,
    A lone adventurer—in doubt.

    Then bolder shoots of deeper hue
    Sprang resolutely into view:
    And, centered in their midst, appeared
    A stem whose head was ever reared
    Upward toward the sun and light,
    Until at last, in raiment white,
    A flower, full blown upon the breeze,
    Did freely waft perfume to please—
    You and me.

  28. Red Carnations

    by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

    One time in Arcadie's fair bowers
    There met a bright immortal band,
    To choose their emblems from the flowers
    That made an Eden of that land.

    Sweet Constancy, with eyes of hope,
    Strayed down the garden path alone
    And gathered sprays of heliotrope,
    To place in clusters at her zone.

    True Friendship plucked the ivy green,
    Forever fresh, forever fair.
    Inconstancy with flippant mien
    The fading primrose chose to wear.

    One moment Love the rose paused by;
    But Beauty picked it for her hair.
    Love paced the garden with a sigh,—
    He found no fitting emblem there.

    Then suddenly he saw a flame;
    A conflagration turned to bloom.
    It even put the rose to shame,
    Both in its beauty and perfume.

    He watched it, and it did not fade;
    He plucked it, and it brighter grew.
    In cold or heat, all undismayed,
    It kept its fragrance and its hue.

    "Here deathless love and passion sleep,"
    He cried, "embodied in this flower.
    This is the emblem I will keep."
    Love wore carnations from that hour.

  29. Milkweed

    by Helen Hunt Jackson

    O, patient creature with a peasant face,
    Burnt by the summer sun, begrimed with stains,
    And standing humbly in the dusty lanes!
    There seems a mystery in thy work and place,
    Which crowns thee with significance and grace;
    Whose is the milk that fills thy faithful veins?
    What royal nursling comes at night and drains
    Unscorned the food of the plebeian race?
    By day I mark no living thing which rests
    On thee save butterflies of gold and brown,
    Who turn from flowers that are more fair, more sweet,
    And crowding eagerly sink fluttering down
    And hang, like jewels flashing in the heat,
    Upon thy splendid rounded purple breasts.

Spring Flowers

  1. The Waking Year

    by Emily Dickinson

    A lady red upon the hill
    Her annual secret keeps;
    A lady white within the field
    In placid lily sleeps!

    The tidy breezes with their brooms
    Sweep vale, and hill, and tree!
    Prithee, my pretty housewives!
    Who may expected be?

    The neighbors do not yet suspect!
    The woods exchange a smile —
    Orchard, and buttercup, and bird —
    In such a little while!

    And yet how still the landscape stands,
    How nonchalant the wood,
    As if the resurrection
    Were nothing very odd!

  2. May-Flower

    by Emily Dickinson

    Pink, small, and punctual,
    Aromatic, low,
    Covert in April,
    Candid in May,

    Dear to the moss,
    Known by the knoll,
    Next to the robin
    In every human soul.

    Bold little beauty,
    Bedecked with thee,
    Nature forswears
    Antiquity.

  3. The Sleeping Flowers

    by Emily Dickinson

    "Whose are the little beds," I asked,
    "Which in the valleys lie?"
    Some shook their heads, and others smiled,
    And no one made reply.

    "Perhaps they did not hear," I said;
    "I will inquire again.
    Whose are the beds, the tiny beds
    So thick upon the plain?"

    "'T is daisy in the shortest;
    A little farther on,
    Nearest the door to wake the first,
    Little leontodon.

    "'T is iris, sir, and aster,
    Anemone and bell,
    Batschia in the blanket red,
    And chubby daffodil."

    Meanwhile at many cradles
    Her busy foot she plied,
    Humming the quaintest lullaby
    That ever rocked a child.

    "Hush! Epigea wakens! —
    The crocus stirs her lids,
    Rhodora's cheek is crimson, —
    She's dreaming of the woods."

    Then, turning from them, reverent,
    "Their bed-time 't is," she said;
    "The bumble-bees will wake them
    When April woods are red."

  4. Resurrection

    by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts

    Daffodil, lily, and crocus,
    They stir, they break from the sod,
    They are glad of the sun, and they open
    Their golden hearts to God.

    They, and the wilding families,—
    Windflower, violet, may,—
    They rise from the long, long dark
    To the ecstasy of day.

    We, scattering troops and kindreds,
    From out of the stars wind-blown
    To this wayside corner of space,
    This world that we call our own,—

    We, of the hedgerows of Time,
    We, too, shall divide the sod,
    Emerge to the light, and blossom,
    With our hearts held up to God.

  5. The Jonquil

    by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts

    Through its brown and withered bulb
    How the white germ felt the sun
    In the dark mould gently stirring
    His spring children one by one!

    Thrilled with heat, it split the husk,
    Shot a green blade up to light,
    And unfurled its orange petals
    In the old enchanter's sight.

    One step more and it had floated
    On the palpitating noon
    Winged and free, a butterfly
    Soaring from the rent cocoon.

    But it could not leave its earth,
    And the May-dew's tender tears,—
    So it wavers there forever
    'Twixt the green and azure spheres.

More Poems About Flowers

  1. With Flowers

    by Emily Dickinson

    South winds jostle them,
    Bumblebees come,
    Hover, hesitate,
    Drink, and are gone.

    Butterflies pause
    On their passage Cashmere;
    I, softly plucking,
    Present them here!

  2. Roadside Flowers

    by Bliss Carman

    We are the roadside flowers,
    Straying from garden grounds, —
    Lovers of idle hours,
    Breakers of ordered bounds.

    If only the earth will feed us,
    If only the wind be kind,
    We blossom for those who need us,
    The stragglers left behind.

    And lo, the Lord of the Garden,
    He makes his sun to rise,
    And his rain to fall with pardon
    On our dusty paradise.

    On us he has laid the duty, —
    The task of the wandering breed,—
    To better the world with beauty,
    Wherever the way may lead.

    Who shall inquire of the season,
    Or question the wind where it blows?
    We blossom and ask no reason.
    The Lord of the Garden knows.

  3. The Bee and the Blossoms

    by John B. Tabb

    "Why stand ye idle, blossoms bright,
    The livelong summer day?"
    "Alas! we labour all the night
    For what thou takest away."

  4. The Fear of Flowers

    by John Clare

    The nodding oxeye bends before the wind,
    The woodbine quakes lest boys their flowers should find,
    And prickly dogrose spite of its array
    Can't dare the blossom-seeking hand away,
    While thistles wear their heavy knobs of bloom
    Proud as a warhorse wears its haughty plume,
    And by the roadside danger's self defy;

    On commons where pined sheep and oxen lie
    In ruddy pomp and ever thronging mood
    It stands and spreads like danger in a wood,
    And in the village street where meanest weeds
    Can't stand untouched to fill their husks with seeds,
    The haughty thistle oer all danger towers,
    In every place the very wasp of flowers.

  5. The Seedling

    by Laurence Dunbar

    As a quiet little seedling
    Lay within its darksome bed,
    To itself it fell a-talking,
    And this is what it said:

    "I am not so very robust,
    But I'll do the best I can;"
    And the seedling from that moment
    Its work of life began.

    So it pushed a little leaflet
    Up into the light of day,
    To examine the surroundings
    And show the rest the way.

    The leaflet liked the prospect,
    So it called its brother, Stem;
    Then two other leaflets heard it,
    And quickly followed them.

    To be sure, the haste and hurry
    Made the seedling sweat and pant;
    But almost before it knew it
    It found itself a plant.

    The sunshine poured upon it,
    And the clouds they gave a shower;
    And the little plant kept growing
    Till it found itself a flower.

    Little folks, be like the seedling,
    Always do the best you can;
    Every child must share life's labor
    Just as well as every man.

    And the sun and showers will help you
    Through the lonesome, struggling hours,
    Till you raise to light and beauty
    Virtue's fair, unfading flowers.

  6. Pretty Flower

    by Raymond Garfield Dandridge

    Truly thou lovest pretty flowers,
    For pretty flower, thyself, thou art.
    May I, if tenderly I pluck thee,
    Make fast thy tendrils to my heart—
    Pretty Flower?

    And should Fate deem thee answer, pluck me!
    Would one of meager courage dare
    To place the hand he feels unworthy
    Upon a spotless lily, fair,
    Pretty Flower?

  7. The White Flower

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    She did not know when she gave thee me,
    How sweet a comforter thou wouldst be
    To her pensive friend in the secret need,
    Which the traveller feels from the tramp of steed,
    The wavering coach, and a lonely hour
    In a stranger group, my fair White Flower!

    When the rumbling sound of the wheels was heard,
    And made me hasten the parting word,
    She plucked thee up from thy native place,
    While the soul looked full from her speaking face,
    And all she felt at the long farewell,
    She left for her tender flower to tell.

    Thou beautiful thing! 't was a holy thought,
    To give me a work which my Maker wrought;
    So pure and perfect to soothe the mind,
    In the rattling cage as I sit confined,
    While it rolls along in the beaten track,
    And my forth goes on, but my heart goes back.

    I'll cast my mantle 'twixt thee and harm,
    From a neighborly skirt, a hostile arm,
    Or a cape astray, whose fall, or brush
    Thy delicate head might wound, or crush;
    And then, my small, but eloquent friend,
    We'll sweetly commune, to my journey's end.

    For He will carry me safely there,
    Who made thy slenderest root his care!—
    He formed the eye that delights to see,
    And the soul that loves to contemplate thee,
    We both are the works of his wondrous power;
    In silence we'll praise him, my sweet White Flower.

  8. The Flowers in the Cemetery

    Here do ye find us steady to our trust,
    As sentinels, who stand to guard the dead.
    Each has her charge to watch the sacred dust,
    Of some one sleeping in the dreamless bed.

    The Flowers in the Cemetery
    Hannah Flagg Gould
    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    Peace keeps the place where we spring up and bloom.
    Kind, gentle angels hover round, to spread
    Our tender leaves, and bow us by the tomb
    To pour our freshest odors o'er the dead.

    Soft, silent air supplies our vital breath.
    It wafts no sound of tumult, mirth, or strife,
    Where, for the mourners, in the land of Death,
    Beneath his throne we open into life.

    Praise to our Maker is the holy part
    Assigned to us; and, while his power we show,
    With soothing skill to reach the stricken heart,
    Awhile to lull the throbbing pulse of woe.

    We to the eye, that on our native sod
    Retires unseen to shed the dew of grief,
    Attest the presence of a perfect God,
    Whose glory shines on every opening leaf.

    Who then our beauty can behold, nor feel
    Something, not sadness, but to joy allied,
    Upon the wounded bosom sweetly steal,
    Like balm by spirit-ministers applied?

    Tell us, ye sad ones, if it be not thus;
    Do ye not own this soothing art is ours,
    When ye come out to breathe your sighs to us,
    And count your sorrows to your cherished flowers?

    Here do ye find us steady to our trust,
    As sentinels, who stand to guard the dead.
    Each has her charge to watch the sacred dust,
    Of some one sleeping in the dreamless bed.

    Well is our high and solemn office done.
    Since we were planted, not a foot has crossed
    A spot that we have pointed out as one
    Where rests a friend, that ye have loved and lost.

    Night falls around us, like a mourner's veil;
    But, though our beauties in the dimness fade,
    Still does the pure, free essence we exhale
    Ascend and penetrate the deepest shade.

    If thus the better part of those you weep,
    From death and darkness, rose to life and light;
    Then lift your hearts from all that earth could keep
    To that blest world where you may re-unite.

    Such is the part that we, the humble Flowers,
    Perform; and such the solace we would give
    To man, who, while we bloom our few short hours,
    Has yet a whole eternity to live!

  9. With a Flower

    by Emily Dickinson

    When roses cease to bloom, dear,
    And violets are done,
    When bumble-bees in solemn flight
    Have passed beyond the sun,

    The hand that paused to gather
    Upon this summer's day
    Will idle lie, in Auburn, —
    Then take my flower, pray!

  10. To The Bee Balm

    by John Burroughs

    Unmoved I saw you blooming,
    Your crimson cap uplooming
    Above the jewel weed;
    'T is true I passed unheeding,
    Unmindful of your pleading,
    Until she gave you heed.

    But when she paused and plucked you,
    And in her bosom tucked you,
    And filled her girlish hands,
    New beauty filled your measure,
    You shone a woodland treasure
    Amid the floral clans.

    Your martial look grew tender,
    More winsome was your splendor
    With her beside the stream;
    Rare gift to charm she brought you,
    With her own graces fraught you,
    Retouched your glowing beam.

    I soon forgot my trouting,
    Repented of my flouting
    Your brave and festive look;
    I saw in you new meaning,
    A nodding or a leaning
    Beside the purling brook.

    Oh, day I long shall cherish,
    Nor let one vision perish
    That filled each sunny hour.
    The phoebe's mossy chamber,
    The pool like liquid amber,
    That mirrored maid and flower.

  11. The Cardinal Flower

    by John Burroughs

    Like peal of a bugle
    Upon the still night,
    So flames her deep scarlet
    In dim forest light.

    A heart-throb of color
    Lit up the dim nook,
    A dash of deep scarlet
    The dark shadows shook.

    Thou darling of August,
    Thou flame of her flame,
    'T is only bold Autumn
    Thy ardor can tame.

  12. Seed-Time

    by John B. Tabb

    When Trumpet-flowers begin to blow
    The Thistle-downs take heed,
    For then they know 'tis time to go
    And plant the wingèd seed.

  13. Song

    by Emily Dickinson

    Summer for thee grant I may be
    When summer days are flown!
    Thy music still when whippoorwill
    And oriole are done!

    For thee to bloom, I'll skip the tomb
    And sow my blossoms o'er!
    Pray gather me, Anemone,
    Thy flower forevermore!

  14. A Cavalcade

    by John B. Tabb

    "Thistle-down, Thistle-down, whither away?
    Will you not longer abide?"
    "Nay, we have wedded the winds to-day,
    And home with the rovers we ride."

  15. As children bid the guest good-night

    by Emily Dickinson

    As children bid the guest good-night,
    And then reluctant turn,
    My flowers raise their pretty lips,
    Then put their nightgowns on.

    As children caper when they wake,
    Merry that it is morn,
    My flowers from a hundred cribs
    Will peep, and prance again.

  16. Possession

    by Emily Dickinson

    Did the harebell loose her girdle
    To the lover bee,
    Would the bee the harebell hallow
    Much as formerly?

    Did the paradise, persuaded,
    Yield her moat of pearl,
    Would the Eden be an Eden,
    Or the earl an earl?

  17. With a Flower

    by Emily Dickinson

    I hide myself within my flower,
    That wearing on your breast,
    You, unsuspecting, wear me too —
    And angels know the rest.

    I hide myself within my flower,
    That, fading from your vase,
    You, unsuspecting, feel for me
    Almost a loneliness.

  18. The Autumn Thistles

    by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts

    The morning sky is white with mist, the earth
    White with the inspiration of the dew.
    The harvest light is on the hills anew,
    And cheer in the grave acres' fruitful girth.
    Only in this high pasture is there dearth,
    Where the gray thistles crowd in ranks austere,
    As if the sod, close-cropt for many a year,
    Brought only bane and bitterness to birth.

    But in the crisp air's amethystine wave
    How the harsh stalks are washed with radiance now,
    How gleams the harsh turf where the crickets lie
    Dew-freshened in their burnished armour brave!
    Since earth could not endure nor heaven allow
    Aught of unlovely in the morn's clear eye.

  19. Flowers

    by F.J. Schwab

    When a flower is exposed
    To the chill night air and dies,
    Is this the flower's fault?
    "Of course not," is the quick reply;
    It could not help itself,
    And so it had to wilt and die.

    But when a woman, like a flower,
    In the path of harm is thrown,
    And to its evil strength succumbs,
    All the world looks down on her;
    While another who was not tempted
    Gets praise for virtuousness,
    When she was but the flower
    That had been kept inside.

    Oh, let us pity—aid, if we can—
    The flowers of human kind
    Who, like the flowers of the field,
    Are too weak to weather through
    The evils that encompass them.

  20. The Prostrate Pink

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    Alas! alas! a silly Pink,
    To climb so fast, and never think
    How feeble was my trust!
    I sought a high and airy throne;
    Aspired too far to stand alone;
    And now, in lowliness, must own
    My kindred with the dust!

    O, would my stem had snapped in twain,
    And saved me from the lingering pain
    Of being thus abased!
    'T is worse than death to lie so low,
    While all the laughing flowers must know,
    Ambition caused my overthrow,
    And brought me here disgraced!

    My native spot is far behind!
    Nor can I turn and hope to find
    Again my parent root,
    Where, fain my blushing head I'd screen
    Among the leaves so thick and green,
    Whence I, a timid bud, was seen
    In infancy to shoot.

    My beauteous form and hue, so bright,
    I thought could tempest, hail and blight
    And insect's touch defy.
    I grew in boldness—meekness fled;
    I burst my cup, my odors shed
    With lavish haste; my petals spread,
    And courted every eye.

    I little knew how great the fault
    Myself to flatter and exalt,
    Until I found, too late,
    My head grew giddy with the height;
    The sun-beam seemed a whirling light;
    I lost my balance—lost my sight;
    And here I met my fate.

    My sister Flowers, take heed! take heed!
    Your loveliness will ever need
    Protection from the blast.
    Be cautious what your beauties court,
    Whereon you venture, how you sport;
    And if a straw is your support,
    See where you may be cast.

    Your charms are highest half-concealed;
    Your sweets are dearest, when revealed
    With modesty and fear;
    And she, who quits the leafy shade
    That nature for her shelter made,
    May pine and languish, moan and fade,
    Like her who sorrows here.

  21. The Death of the Flowers

    William Cullen Bryant

    The melancholy days are come,
    The saddest of the year,
    Of wailing winds, and naked woods,
    And meadows brown and sear.
    Heaped in the hollows of the grove
    The autumn leaves lie dead;
    They rustle to the eddying gust,
    And to the rabbit's tread.
    The robin and the wren are flown,
    And from the shrubs the jay,
    And from the wood top calls the crow
    Through all the gloomy day.

    Where are the flowers, the fair young flowers,
    That lately sprang and stood
    In brighter light and softer airs,
    A beauteous sisterhood?
    Alas! they all are in their graves;
    The gentle race of flowers
    Are lying in their lowly beds
    With the fair and good of ours.
    The rain is falling where they lie;
    But the cold November rain
    Calls not from out the gloomy earth
    The lovely ones again.

    The windflower and the violet,
    They perished long ago,
    And the brier rose and the orchis died
    Amid the summer's glow;
    But on the hill, the golden-rod,
    And the aster in the wood,
    And the yellow sunflower by the brook,
    In autumn beauty stood,
    Till fell the frost from the clear, cold heaven,
    As falls the plague on men,
    And the brightness of their smile was gone
    From upland, glade, and glen,

    And now, when comes the calm, mild day,
    As still such days will come,
    To call the squirrel and the bee
    From out their winter home;
    When the sound of dropping nuts is heard,
    Though all the trees are still,
    And twinkle in the smoky light
    The waters of the rill,
    The south wind searches for the flowers
    Whose fragrance late he bore,
    And sighs to find them in the wood
    And by the stream no more.

    And then I think of one, who in
    Her youthful beauty died,
    The fair, meek blossom that grew up
    And faded by my side.
    In the cold, moist earth we laid her,
    When the forest cast the leaf,
    And we wept that one so lovely
    Should have a life so brief;
    Yet not unmeet it was that one,
    Like that young friend of ours,
    So gentle and so beautiful,
    Should perish with the flowers.

  22. A Laughing Chorus

    by Anonymous

    Oh, such a commotion under the ground When March called, "Ho, there! ho!"
    Such spreading of rootlets far and wide, Such whispering to and fro;
    And, "Are you ready?" the Snowdrop asked, "'Tis time to start, you know."
    "Almost, my dear," the Scilla replied; "I'll follow as soon as you go."
    Then, "Ha! ha! ha!" a chorus came Of laughter soft and low,
    From the millions of flowers under the ground, Yes—millions—beginning to grow.

    O, the pretty brave things! through the coldest days, Imprisoned in walls of brown,
    They never lost heart though the blast shrieked loud, And the sleet and the hail came down,
    But patiently each wrought her beautiful dress, Or fashioned her beautiful crown;
    And now they are coming to brighten the world, Still shadowed by Winter's frown;
    And well may they cheerily laugh, "Ha! ha!" In a chorus soft and low,
    The millions of flowers hid under the ground Yes—millions—beginning to grow.

  23. Trailing Arbutus

    by John Greenleaf Whittier

    I wandered lonely where the pine-trees made
    Against the bitter East their barricade,
    And, guided by its sweet
    Perfume, I found, within a narrow dell,
    The trailing spring flower tinted like a shell
    Amid dry leaves and mosses at my feet.

    From under dead boughs, for whose loss the pines
    Moaned ceaseless overhead, the blossoming vines
    Lifted their glad surprise,
    While yet the bluebird smoothed in leafless trees
    His feathers ruffled by the chill sea-breeze,
    And snow-drifts lingered under April skies.

    As, pausing, o'er the lonely flower I bent,
    I thought of lives thus lowly clogged and pent,
    Which yet find room,
    Through care and cumber, coldness and decay,
    To lend a sweetness to the ungenial day
    And make the sad earth happier for their bloom.

  24. Home Memories

    by Kate Slaughter McKinney

    A few of the springtime flowers,
    And the summer blossoms sweet,
    Agreed, at the early autumn,
    In a locust grove to meet,

    And there to hold communion,
    By the light of the setting sun,
    And each relate or mention
    Some kind act they had done.

    And he whose deed was noblest
    Should, at the close of day,
    Be colonel of the regiment,
    And lead the ranks away.

    So, one by one I watched them
    Assemble where the trees
    Had lowered their limbs to listen
    And halted every breeze.

    A Rose in the richest satin,
    With a bud to her bonnet tied,
    Was first to break the silence
    That reigned on every side.

    “I lived with a lovely lady,
    In a handsome house of brick,
    And went with her each morning,
    To wait upon the sick.

    “I’ve leaned beside the pillows,
    Where wounded soldiers lay,
    And I wept at the funeral service,
    Of an orphan child to-day.”

    “I bloomed in an humble garden, Where an old man used to look,”
    Said the Johnquil, “ere the snow-drift His window-sill forsook.”

    “A poor bee shivered homeward
    One night,” the Tulip said,
    “Fell through my scarlet curtains,
    And died upon my bed.”

    “I looked in at a window,
    And made two lovers kiss,”
    The Pansy owned, and laughing
    Said it was not amiss.

    “I went into a palace,”
    The Lily then replied,
    “And held the veil that evening
    Of a happy-hearted bride.”

    “I sweetened the room of a poet,
    And o’er his coffin wept,”
    The Heliotrope low whispered,
    And back in the shadows crept.

    “O, that was very noble,”
    Exclaimed the Golden-rod,
    “I tried to gather the sunshine
    And hold it up to God.

    “To make the world less sober,
    To make the heart less sad,
    Was all the mission, brethren,
    Your humble servant had.”

    * * * * *

    In the ranks of that floral army
    That marched at the close of day,
    That sunny-featured blossom
    Was the one that led the way.

  25. Contentment

    by John E. Everett

    "Brown and yellow, and yellow and brown,
    Are choicest colors for my crown."
    The sunflower said; "I am content,
    I want no other ornament."

    "Yellow and white," the daisy spake,
    "Were made, I think, for my own sake;
    I scarce would want to show my face
    If other tints should take their place."

    "Blue as heaven draped on high,
    Blue as bluest spot of sky—
    It is the shade I love the best,"
    The violet said, with hearty zest.

  26. White Foxglove

    by Grace Hazard Conkling

    Here in a leaning tower
    Brown bees are at home.
    This is the moon-loved flower.
    Like cells of honey-comb
    These taper and are brimmed
    With savors of wild dew.
    Oh, bees gold-laced and limbed,
    I envy you!