William Wordsworth
Wordsworth (in an 1873 reproduction of an 1839 watercolor by Margaret Gillies)

by William Wordsworth
[composed in 28 April 1802, published in 1807]

That is work of waste and ruin–
Do as Charles and I are doing!
Strawberry-blossoms, one and all,
We must spare them–here are many:
Look at it–the flower is small,
Small and low, though fair as any:
Do not touch it! summers two
I am older, Anne, than you.

Pull the Primrose, Sister Anne!
Pull as many as you can.
–Here are daisies, take your fill;
Pansies, and the cuckoo-flower:
Of the lofty daffodil
Make your bed, or make your bower;
Fill your lap, and fill your bosom;
Only spare the strawberry-blossom!

Primroses, the Spring may love them–
Summer knows but little of them:
Violets, do what they will, 
Withered on the ground must lie;
Daisies leave no fruit behind
When the pretty flowerets die;
Pluck them, and another year
As many will be blowing here.

God has given a kindlier power
To the favoured strawberry-flower.
Hither soon as spring is fled
You and Charles and I will walk;
Lurking berries, ripe and red,
Then will hang on every stalk,
Each within its leafy bower;
And for that promise spare the flower!

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