Friday, January 30, 2009

Poetry Friday - The Seedling

I have been reading The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar courtesy of my Daily Lit subscription. Every day I get a nice little morsel in the mail, though you can also sign up for a customized RSS feed. I prefer e-mail, as I love finding a bit of poetry in my mailbox each day. Here is a poem that recently struck me as lovely and overlooked.
The Seedling
by Paul Laurence Dunbar

As a quiet little seedling
Lay within its darksome bed,
To itself it fell a-talking,
And this is what it said:

"I am not so very robust,
But I'll do the best I can;"
And the seedling from that moment
Its work of life began.

So it pushed a little leaflet
Up into the light of day,
To examine the surroundings
And show the rest the way.

The leaflet liked the prospect,
So it called its brother, Stem;
Then two other leaflets heard it,
And quickly followed them.

To be sure, the haste and hurry
Made the seedling sweat and pant;
But almost before it knew it
It found itself a plant.

The sunshine poured upon it,
And the clouds they gave a shower;
And the little plant kept growing
Till it found itself a flower.

Little folks, be like the seedling,
Always do the best you can;
Every child must share life's labor
Just as well as every man.

And the sun and showers will help you
Through the lonesome, struggling hours,
Till you raise to light and beauty
Virtue's fair, unfading flowers.
The round up this week is being hosted by Suzanne at Adventures in Daily Living. Do stop by and take in all the great poetry being shared. Before you go, be sure to check out this week's poetry stretch results. Happy poetry Friday, all!


  1. Oh, I love that. I used to teach about plants (and poetry) for third grade. I would have had that poem posted on the bulletin board!

  2. It's a perfect little poem. Love it. SO nice to have that image of green and growth on a bleak winter's day!!

  3. Very nice! I want to read more of Dunbar. Thanks for the link to the daily Lit. I get an Issa haiku in my email every day and I love that. Going to sign up for this too.

  4. This is a perfect poem for my little boy. Thanks for sharing.

  5. OK, don't you LOVE the word darksome???

    This is very dear, Tricia. So much sweeter than the dark, cautionary poems that are more threatening...
    Thanks for sharing...

  6. Yes, what a perfect read aloud to a third or fourth grade class. Lovely. Thanks for sharing.

  7. It's a great poem but it's also a great image- people finding a gift of poetry amidst humdrum emails

  8. Lovely. Thanks for posting.

  9. I am reading a lot of garden poetry lately and this is going right into my "saved" file. Thanks for posting it.

  10. Hmm . . . not exactly my cuppa, but I can say that I'm glad I read it!

  11. I'll add this to my plant unit for next year!