Saturday, February 5, 2011

Stars And Daisies: Andrew Young And Harald Sohlberg

"Flower Meadow in the North" was painted by Harald Sohlberg (1869-1935) in 1905, when he was staying at Gullikstad, Norway.  It is in the collection of the Nasjonalgalleriet in Oslo.  Sohlberg is one of many fine Scandinavian landscape painters of the 19th and early-20th centuries.  As an introduction to these artists, I recommend Torsten Gunnarsson's Nordic Landscape Painting in the Nineteenth Century (1998) and A Mirror of Nature: Nordic Landscape Painting, 1840-1910 (2006), by Gunnarsson and others.   

I featured "Flower Meadow in the North" in a previous post, and I thought of it again when reading the following poem by Andrew Young (1885-1971):


The stars are everywhere to-night,
Above, beneath me and around;
They fill the sky with powdery light
And glimmer from the night-strewn ground;
For where the folded daisies are
In every one I see a star.

And so I know that when I pass
Where no sun's shadow counts the hours
And where the sky was there is grass
And where the stars were there are flowers,
Through the long night in which I lie
Stars will be shining in my sky.

Andrew Young, Collected Poems (1960).  "Daisies" in turn brings to mind two lines from Young's "The Ruined Chapel":

And headstones lie so deep in grass
They follow dead men to their graves.

Andrew Young, Collected Poems (1960).


Anonymous said...

A few years ago, my Eurythmy teacher chose the first verse of "Daisies" to use for a dance sequence. The picture it draws is still with me.

Stephen Pentz said...

Anonymous: thank you very much for visiting and commenting. A eurythmy teacher who knows the poetry of Andrew Young -- you are fortunate!

Carol said...

I was in that Eurythmy class too I think. The sounds and movements of this poem surge into me whenever I stand looking up into a starry night.
Thank you for your blog. I am interested to explore your work.

Stephen Pentz said...

Carol: thank you very much for visiting, and for your kind words. I'm happy that you found your way here.

That is an interesting coincidence about "Daisies" and the Eurythmy class! I wouldn't have thought that Andrew Young's poetry would be that well known. But I am delighted to discover that it is out and about in the world.

Thank you again.