Both Burns and Wordsworth wrote on great philosophical themes and about the most modest of flowers. Burns’s daisy was uprooted and provoked a melancholy reflection from the poet. Wordsworth’s lines, here, are simply celebratory. This is one of no fewer than four paeans he devoted to the daisy.

             from THE DAISY

With little here to do or see

Loading article content

Of things that in the great world be,

Daisy! again I talk to thee,

For thou art worthy,

Thou unassuming Common-place

Of Nature, with that homely face,

And yet with something of a grace

Which love makes for thee!


Oft on the dappled turf at ease

I sit, and play with similes,

Loose types of things through all degrees,

Thoughts of thy raising:

And many a fond and idle name

I give to thee, for praise or blame,

As is the humour of the game

While I am gazing.


A nun demure of lowly port;

Or sprightly maiden of Love’s court,

In thy simplicity the sport

Of all temptations;

A queen in crown of rubies drest;

A starveling in a scanty vest;

Are all, as seems to suit thee best

Thy appellations.


A little Cyclops with one eye

Staring to threaten and defy,

That thought comes next – and instantly

The freak is over,

The shape will vanish – and behold

A silver shield with boss of gold,

That spreads itself, some faery bold

In fight to cover!