Monday, January 31, 2011

Welcome, February

Ahhhh, the harshness and the dead of January is behind us.

The month of love begins and promises of things to come.

A month when our hearts start the pitter-patter of the hope of Spring, and its first floral appearing....

...the snowdrop

As winter fades above you, 
Your crown pokes through the ground.
You tentatively peep and take
A regal look around.

Good morning little snowdrop, so full of hope and grace.How wonderful to welcome your gentle smiling face.  

You stretch to reach the sunlight
With gracious, sylphlike yawn.
Your confidence is growing;
Hope of spring begins to dawn.

Good afternoon young snowdrop, so full of peace and love
How wonderful to welcome you to the world above.           
The snow has disappeared,
And winter turns and leaves.
Your wave farewell reveals
Your long and slender sleeves.

Good day my little snowdrop, so delicate and fineHow wonderful to welcome you into this heart of mine.  

You sway in celebration,
Dancing lightly in the breeze.
The weather has a delicate
And sudden, tiny sneeze.

Good evening humble snowdrop; I’m so pleased that you’re here.
You bring a breath of life to the beginning of the year. 

Angela Yardy 2010

Snowdrops are a member of the lily family ~ closely related to the daffodil, originally from Turkey.

The snowdrop's affinity in Great Britian is similar to the tulip in Holland with splendid displays throughout the British Isles. According to the Great British Gardens website, there are over forty listings of estates and parks who welcome those interested in taking in the beautiful parade of winter's bourgeoning promise.

The snowdrop has been a garnered spectacle since the early Middle Ages because of its association with faith, as they cluster around churchyards and old religious foundations such as ruined abbies and prioiries.  Imagine before the advent of electricity, the gloom of a February day and the dank darkness of a medieval church.

The snowdrop has had a strong association with a specific feast of the Roman Catholic Church:  Candlemas.  Candlemas takes place forty days after Christmas, February 2nd.  It is the feast of the Purification of the Virgin Mary.  Before the Reformation, parishioners formed in procession, brought their candles to be blessed, then lit, and set before the Virgin's statue.  Then the precious candles were taken home to ward off evil spirits. It is not hard to imagine how, on a typically gloomy February day in a medieval church that was fairly dark anyway, that this must have provided a spectacle of brightness that left onlookers quite spellbound. It must have been the brightest moment, quite literally, of the whole year. Then the precious candles were taken home, to ward off evil spirits.

It is easy to imagine, too, how snowdrops were the perfect flower for the feast, flawless symbols of purity and cleanliness, and what pleasure must have been taken in gathering them, or in merely having them growing around a church on the day itself. They were known then as Candlemas bells.

For most of us, Candlemas and its traditions are long gone, but the flower whose plantings it inspired lives on to remind us that winter is ending.

Snowdrop ~ the hope of Spring.

The hope of Spring ~ Jesus the Christ.

Be strong and take heart, all you who HOPE in the LORD. 
 Psalm 31:24


  1. Becky, you found some beautiful photos of Snowdrops. To see a swathe of them is so moving. Many of the gardens in england invite people to do a Snowdrop walk.
    The sad thing is that they dont grow well in France.

  2. That was just beautiful and so interesting!!!! Thank you for sharing their history. A breathe of fresh air!
    Love Carissa

  3. Hi. Nice to meet you. My name is Amy. I had planned to try and get around to reading all of these links, but more kept appearing and I have run out of time. I think these links disappear when the party ends, so since I will no longer be able to find your blog, please contact me and let me know if you are interested in me still reading your link and I can come back at another date and do so. I have throuly enjoyed learning about everyone I have read about so far and would love to know more about you too! Hope you have enjoyed the party...

  4. Becky - May I please use your beautiful snowdrop closeup photo for a medical education website? I would post it here:
    Thank you kindly!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...