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Flowers are that eternal and universal symbol that can mean so much more than words.

Spring is in the air in the Pacific Northwest. The advent of spring brings a fresh profusion of color and joy to our world. Crocuses, daffodils, azaleas and rhododendrons grace our paths. Cherry, apple and pear blossoms provide a rich canopy to lift our hearts and add that extra zip to our steps. Roses will not be far behind.

Flowers are that eternal and universal symbol – an expression of thoughts and feelings that can mean so much more than words. A single bloom proffered as a symbol of love, a bunch of flowers offered in apology, a wreath or garland laid to rest on a tomb or grave, or a handful of flowers shared just because.

For me, seeing daffodils dancing in the breeze brings back a couple of memories. First, I harken back to my school days and my English Literature poetry classes. I recall the poem: "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" by William Wordsworth, and these lines in particular:

"When all at once I saw a crowd,

A host, of golden daffodils;

Beside the lake, beneath the trees,

Fluttering and dancing in the breeze."

Second, what fun it was to take a tour of Dove Cottage, the home of Poet William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy, in England's Lake District in 2015. Wordsworth lived at Dove Cottage from December 1799 to May 1808 and wrote much of his poetry there, including the poem: "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud." Although I had visited the U.K. several times before, I hadn't had the opportunity to visit the Lake District. The 2015 trip was extra special – being able to spend fun times with a great friend from the U.K. who we wish lived closer to us. And yes, it's always lovely to have a friendly Englishman drive us around on what we consider the wrong side of the road but is very much the "left" side of the road for the U.K.!

To bring us back from the reminiscing, regardless of where you're from or where you are – flowers have, throughout the ages, been an eternal source of comfort and joy around the world, no matter the occasion or season. As we welcome spring this year, take time to step back and breathe in the fragrance of the blossoms (allergies notwithstanding!), appreciate nature's beauty and embrace the power of flowers.

Lilisa Hall is a member of the Jottings Group at the Lake Oswego Adult Community Center.


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