Friday, 15 April 2011






Poor old Robert Browning after marrying his Elizabeth, lived in Italy until her death
in 1861, to keep away from her tyrannical father. Sounds an idyllic place to live - Florence, Venice, warm weather, warm seas, blue skies. But I think we can say with certainty that oh how he missed the coming of the English Spring.

We all know his poem "Home Thoughts from Abroad" - oh to be in England, now that April's there. But I think my favourite poem of his about Spring is Pippa's Song.

The year's at the Spring,
The day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearl'd;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in his heaven -
All's right with the world.

It epitomised for Browning all the things he was missing about his home country.
Now Spring is really here and everything is shouting out "Look at me!" The lovely little black lambs, already eating the grass; the blackthorn - the best blossom on it that the farmer has seen for years; the delicately-scented cowslips, once in short supply but now making a fantastic come-back; Primula wanda, that most common of all the primula family, but the one guaranteed to flower whatever the weather; and - last but not least - just in time for the Royal Wedding - Spirea "Bridal Wreath". What more could anyone wish for? Have a lovely week end.

14 comments:

Heather said...

A beautiful post Pat - if I had to move abroad I think I'd be homesick for England in April. Robert Browning expresses our feelings about this loveliest time of year to perfection.

H said...

The blackthorn is beautiful round here this year too. In general, the blossom seems to be better than it has been for a few years.

Rare Lesser Spotted said...

Spring is indeed a wonderful time of year. Great post - thanks for sharing his poem.
X

steven said...

weaver, i haven't experienced the english spring as an adult and so it is in entirely digital or printed form that i look at it and hold my breath in wonder. truly i do! steven

Loren said...

Thanks, pat, somehow I'd managed to forget that poem.

Hildred and Charles said...

Twice we have been in England in May, and it was beautiful in the countryside. An old familiar poem to me, - probably because of my grandmother who came from England in 1912 and was never able to go back. despite her homesickness and I'm sure her longing for April at home.

Catch the Kids said...

I love my country - Australia. but oh how I adore daffodils and bluebells... must have been English in another life. I haven't read that last poem by Browning for years. Thanks for reminding me...

Cloudia said...

nature heals! Thanks




Aloha from Honolulu


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ChrisJ said...

Sweet, sweet spring in England. We are enjoying spring too-- if a little more flamboyantly. Our weather shot up into the high seventies this weekend -- just what I needed in order to sit out on the patio and watch the birds.

Linda said...

This poem by Browning is so surprising in it's small structure, yet it is so able to sum up everything we love about spring in so few words. It's like your pictures, Pat.
The lambs, the primula, the blackthorn, the cowslips and the bridal wreath are all visions of spring time. Thank you for sharing the things I am looking forward to when Toronto warms up.

izzy said...

My Mother loved that poem! I also love the bridal wreath you pictured. I am finding how many different ones there are- I have one naturalized one that is endangered where it is, by one of my dogs. Today I am finally going to attempt to move it! Thanks.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Glad you all enjoyed this hint of Spring.

Bovey Belle said...

Ah - Bridal Wreath! Someone used some sprigs in a beautiful display at Newton House this week (where I am a Room Steward once a week) and a visitor wanted to know what it was. Nearest I could get was Spiraea but she thought not . . .

My middle daughter gave me a lovely book at Christmas, about the Brownings life once they moved to Florence.

He would have loved it back in England now - here in Wales our Bluebells are just starting to make a showing. I intend to take LOTS and LOTS of photos in the woods at Newton House when they come out properly. We always used to take the children there each spring for a bluebell walk.

Crafty Green Poet said...

oh Spring is such a wonderful time! We saw a lovely array of cowslips today, but my photos were dreadful because the flowers were dancing in the breeze so much! Your cowslip photo is lovely!