The Power of Daffodils

I consider daffodils to be a cosmopolitan flower. They are cultivated in many countries at this time of year to be sold for spring celebrations.

The power of daffodils is the same over here as it is in Poland, Bulgaria, or Sweden. It lies in the power of the contradiction between their energy and their vulnerability. Their yellow represents great energy and optimism. At the same time these delicate plants are greatly dependent on an abundant supply of water for their survival. They definitely are not suitable for my Tucson garden!

Yellow daffodils on a dark background

Daffodils are beautiful when in masses – as in an open field. They are as beautiful in cut form, but their lives then are much, much shorter.

The daffodils of this spring have had a strong touch of sadness and drama for me. I brought them to my dear friend, Susan, in the last hours of her intense and brave battle with cancer. I shared them with good friends to honor both Susan’s departure and this Easter Holiday’s arrival.

I am now looking at the daffodils standing royally in a vase in the center of the table at my home. They look strong and happy, while I feel deflated and sad. Never before had their yellow reminded me of other yellows: the massive gold of forsythia blooms next to my house on the Cape – the plant that I have always considered the birthday plant for my older son who now is totally estranged from me…. The yellow of the lower row of the daffodils’ petals reminds me of the gentle yellow of the roses associated with two friends who are no longer among us. Finally the strong yellow of the daffodils’ blooms brings to my mind the bloom of the mesquite tree that I loved and lost several years ago. Losses, losses, losses – all in a yellow hue….

Is that yellow melancholy going to take over my heart for the entire Easter weekend? I wondered. So I examined again carefully the daffodils in the vase. And here was the surprise – their tender green stems and ruffled yellow trumpets were not affected by my dark mood at all! Yet, their irresistible yellow energy slowly replaced my darkness. That is the power of flowers!

Alicja

P.S.

Many poems were written about daffodils and their youthful dancing energy. Here you can listen to the poem of William Wordsworth:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EK9UWpYuZiE

Have a good Easter weekend and a MULTICOLORED Spring!

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Text and photos copyright © 2013 by Alicja Mann

Explore posts in the same categories: Essays, Feelings, Memories, Photo essays, Thoughts

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12 Comments on “The Power of Daffodils”

  1. Connie Says:

    Alicja, I have forwarded this to Sharon, my expat sister who lives with her Australian family in a beautiful valley in Tumut, NSW. I know she will appreciate your story, as well as this beautifully resonant rendition of Wordsworth. Could it really be the end of March (my flower also) already? I so hope the best for your son and you—-I do also have a family member from whom I am estranged. It is very difficult to forget. Hope to see you and David before you take off again! Happy Easter, xoxoxo Connie

    • Alicja Mann Says:

      Dear Connie,

      Thank you for your support and understanding. I also hope to see you soon – perhaps on the end of this month? And yes, it is April already!

      Love,
      Alicja

  2. Alison P. Nylund Says:

    Thank you, Alicja, for helping Susan and for on Good Friday giving me daffodils to remember her by. Now on Easter, those daffodils are a bit faded and wrinkled (like me) a reminder of how quickly our physical life and our place in memory will fade. Yet we are beautiful and worthy of care while we are here.

    • Alicja Mann Says:

      Thank you for your reflective comment, Alison. I love the way you ended it, so I will echo your words here to remember them and for others to remember them.

      Yes, we are beautiful and worthy of care while we are here!

      Alicja

  3. gosia kondrak Says:

    Witaj Dzidka, Dziekuje za zyczenia swiateczne i rowniez dla Ciebie i Rodziny wszystkiego najlepszego na Swieta Wielkanocne, dobra, zdrowia, radosci wokol.Wreszcie wiosny w Polsce takze. Gosia z Rodzina

  4. Don Richardson Says:

    ALICJA: Our daffadowndillies are riotous this year! I have had to call a police SWAT team to control them! Arrests are pending. Send bail money! Don Richardson gaia@comporium.net The decision has already been made to destroy life on Earth for profit.

    • Alicja Mann Says:

      Hello Don,

      Thank you for the news. Your daffodils are riotous this year? Do not worry – they live short, so there is no need to arrest them!

      Alicja

  5. Marina G Says:

    Alicja, you have once again managed to pull a rabbit out of a hat (bonnet?) with your writing! After such a time as you have had – what a beautiful Easter blog.

    I am so sorry about what you went through with your friend, Susan, and the other trials this year has brought. I’m glad to know that the daffodils have helped you find the renewal that I have been wishing for you this Easter.

    — And in so many ways, you are like that flower, so Happy Easter to you, Dear Daffodil!

    Love,

    Marina

    • Alicja Mann Says:

      I am “a bit” late with my response and I hope you do understand why.

      One of these days, Marina, I will print all your comments and place them in an elegant hat – red or black most likely – in place of a rabbit. I will keep them there for the times of my great needs – when my spirit is low, so I can regain some creative energy from them. THANK YOU!

      Love,
      Alicja

  6. Mark Trocchi Says:

    Hey…great daffodils pics.  What’s a good email address for you so I can send you some of mine.  I have glorious plantings of severaldifferent varieties that grace the yard here at my home office…also known as The Barn.  I’d love to send them to you.   

      Mark Trocchi

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