Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Today's poem - The Tuft of Flowers by Robert Frost

The Tuft of Flowers
by Robert Frost

I went to turn the grass once after one
Who mowed it in the dew before the sun.

The dew was gone that made his blade so keen
Before I came to view the leveled scene.

I looked for him behind an isle of trees;
I listened for his whetstone on the breeze.

But he had gone his way, the grass all mown,
And I must be, as he had been,—alone,

'As all must be,’ I said within my heart,
‘Whether they work together or apart.'

But as I said it, swift there passed me by
On noiseless wing a bewildered butterfly,

Seeking with memories grown dim o’er night
Some resting flower of yesterday’s delight.

And once I marked his flight go round and round,
As where some flower lay withering on the ground.

And then he flew as far as eye could see,
And then on tremulous wing came back to me.

I thought of questions that have no reply,
And would have turned to toss the grass to dry;

But he turned first, and led my eye to look
At a tall tuft of flowers beside a brook,

A leaping tongue of bloom the scythe had spared
Beside a reedy brook the scythe had bared.

The mower in the dew had loved them thus,
By leaving them to flourish, not for us,

Nor yet to draw one thought of ours to him.
But from sheer morning gladness at the brim.

The butterfly and I had lit upon,
Nevertheless, a message from the dawn,

That made me hear the wakening birds around,
And hear his long scythe whispering to the ground,

And feel a spirit kindred to my own;
So that henceforth I worked no more alone;

But glad with him, I worked as with his aid,
And weary, sought at noon with him the shade;

And dreaming, as it were, held brotherly speech
With one whose thought I had not hoped to reach.

‘Men work together,’ I told him from the heart,
‘Whether they work together or apart.’

The hill newly mown, a tuft of flowers, and two black dogs.


  1. Your new header photo is such a pretty rose.

    I love the poem by RF. The new mown meadow with the dogs looks idyllic.

  2. Love your 2 dogs! They look perfect in the meadow. Love that poem too!

  3. Wonderful poem, Nan.

    And One Black Dog in Devon, England (where we also have a village of the same name) sends canine greetings across the pond. (He says to be sure to tell the Two Black Dogs that he is also a labrador.)

  4. Are those lupine?!! Wow. I've never seen them that tall. Great picture of the dawgs. :)

  5. Hi Nan,

    Thank you so much for sharing this lovely poem. Have a wonderful rest of the week!



  6. Hello Nan, I have been visiting your blog for a week or so and thought I should stop and say hello. I love this poem and in fact was looking for something just like this to post on my blog after mowing our lawn and losing all the lovely white clover in the process. I am about to write about our clover and will put a link to this post on my blog, so stop by and take a look! Happy blogging!

  7. What a lovely photo and a lovely poem too - I love Robert Frost. He was one of the Dymock Poets, who lived in the Dymock/Much Marcle area on the Gloucestershire/Herefordshire border just before WW1. I visited there recently and there is a really good exhibition about the poets and their lives and works.

  8. Really enjoyed coming across 'A Tuft of Flowers'. I could have lifted it from the shelf but serendipity is so much better.

    Have come via Geraniumcats blog - look forward to visiting again.


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