GeraniumsOnline   

                                               

 

THE GERANIUM

by  RICHARD BRINSLEY SHERIDAN

Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751 - 1815) was a writer, actor and politician. He is most famous for his play “The School for Scandal.” ‘The Geranium’ was written in the 1770s and about half is reproduced here.

In the close covert of a grove

By nature formed for scenes of love,

Said Susan in a lucky hour:

‘Observe yon sweet geranium flower.

How straight upon its stalk it stands,

And tempts our violating hands,

Whilst the soft bud, as yet outspread,

Hangs down its pale declining head.

Yet soon as it is ripe to blow,

the stems shall rise, the head shall glow.’

‘Nature,’ said I, ‘my lovely Sue,

To all her followers lends a clue.

Her simple laws themselves explain

As links of one continued chain;

For her the mysteries of creation

Are but the works of generation.

Yon blushing, strong, triumphant flower

Is in the crisis of its power:

But short, alas, its vigorous reign;

He sheds his seed, and drops again.

The bud that hangs in pale decay

Feels not, as yet, the plastic ray.

Tomorrow’s sun shall bid him rise,

Then, too, he sheds his seed, and dies.

But words, my love, are vain and weak;

For proof, let bright example speak.’ …

© 2010, Central Coast Geranium Society (CCGS )