Monday, April 7, 2014

Remembering Daffodils

In case you haven't figured it out yet, I am a person of varied--sometimes extremely varied--interests. Today is the birthday of one of my favorite poets--William Wordsworth. I am remembering "Intimations of Immortality," and his verse celebrating nature, as well as my visit to Dove Cottage in the Lake District of England where he lived with his sister Dorothy--one of those women too often forgotten who inspired the more famous men in their lives--and where they entertained many of the famous Romantic poets of the period. I recall gardens, parks, the old Swan Hotel, and the gingerbread. And I recall Bullwinkle.
(See, I told you so.)

I guess the world really is too much with me, but I have always been a fan of that lovable moose and his pal, the flying squirrel--Rocky. But why do I connect Bullwinkle with Wordsworth? Bullwinkle, for those of you too young to remember or have forgotten, was a lover of poetry and would, from time to time, recite a poem, actually a version of a poem. As in the case of his recitation of Wordsworth's "Daffodils," he is interrupted, and the poem goes off in a humorous direction.

Just as Bugs Bunny cartoons used classical music to illustrate themes, lest their viewers remain Liszt-less, (Sorry, couldn't resist) so Jay Ward brought poetry into the story-lines of Bullwinkle. I was 14 when Rocky and His Friends first appeared after American Bandstand. Although a lover of poetry since my early years, I doubt I had read any of Wordsworth at the time. So, thanks to the two most famous citizens of Frostbite Falls, Minnesota, I first heard the verse of Wordsworth, albeit twisted into a plot with Boris Badenov--yet another humorous allusion.

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