12 April 2009


I got me flowers
by George Herbert

I got me flowers to strew thy way;
I got me boughs off many a tree:
But thou wast up by break of day,
And brought’st thy sweets along with thee.

The Sun arising in the East,
Though he give light, and the East perfume;
If they should offer to contest
With thy arising, they presume.

Can there be any day but this,
Though many suns to shine endeavour?
We count three hundred, but we miss:
There is but one, and that one ever.

The bouquet was spied on the stoop of a townhouse on West Eleventh Street in New York City. “I got me flowers” is from a collection of poems by George Herbert (1593–1633) called “The Temple.” Five of these poems were set to music by Ralph Vaughan Williams. My favorite recording is of baritone John Shirley Quirk with the choir of King’s College Cambridge, but I can’t find any YouTube of this! Happy Easter!


  1. Anonymous4:42 PM

    Jared, what a wonderful post! Do you suppose the flowers were an unexpected gift of spring? An apology? An 'I love you'? They're spectacular...and so is the poem. :) Happy Easter!

  2. Happy Easter! I don't know about the flowers, but there must be a good story there. I was glad I got to them before the recipient had a chance to get them inside!