… And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
[William Wordsworth]

Photo by James E. Miller, Willowgreen, Inc.

On the way home from the grocery this morning, a splash of yellow caught my eye. It was the daffodils in Foster Park. We just shed the third snowiest winter on record so the sight of the flowers was doubly welcome.

I stopped to walk among the blooms and thought of all of my friends who need healing. I wish they could have walked with me. It calmed my soul and refreshed my spirit.

And now (as Paul Harvey used to say) here is the rest of the story—or at least the inspiration for this post:

Daffodils
by William Wordsworth

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced, but they
Out-did the sparkling leaves in glee;
A poet could not be but gay,
In such a jocund company!
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

About Foster Park from the Fort Wayne, Indiana Parks and Recreation website:

In 1912 Samuel and Colonel David N. Foster and their families donated Foster Park to Fort Wayne. The land extended along the St. Mary’s River for some two miles, including wooded areas. The original wooded section contained 67 acres. Shortly after the addition of that land, the Fosters again made a donation. This time, another 40 acres. This extended the park as far as the Stellhorn Bridge. In the early 1920’s the Park Board purchased 111 additional acres of land making the park an area of 218 acres, and bringing the park to four miles of river bank.  In the large area the Municipal Golf Course and pavilions were and are located. In subsequent years additional land was added making for a total of 255 acres and Foster Park now also includes:swings and other play equipment, tennis courts, trails, floral areas, a replica of Abe Lincoln’s Birth Cabin, and a cable foot bridge among other features.

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