The day of the daffodil

As we all know, St David is the patron saint of daffodils.  Or if he isn’t, you’d never know it to walk around Cardiff on St David’s day.  Quite aside from the official displays, vast swathes of yellow appear to overwhelm green spaces so indiscriminately that Wordsworth himself would have been left wordless.

And while the poet was content to wander lonely as a cloud, some prefer to get stuck in.  I refer – of course – to my three boys.

The park-keeper

Three boys' daffodil project
Three boys' daffodil project

During the week, Mónica took the kids to one of Cardiff’s many parks, and found there more daffodils than even Wordsworth could shake a stick at.  Unsurprisingly, Oliver’s mind leapt into gear and started thinking of all the projects he could do with a limitless supply of daffodils.

He instantly jumped in, and began to pick daffodils for his project…at which point, the park-keeper ambled up.

And yea did the park-keeper wax great wrath for the destruction of daffodils, and for such a crime did he call down a plague of…

Actually he didn’t.  He smiled, and asked Oliver to ensure that any daffodils he picked, he also took home with him.

So, encouraged by the park-keeper, Oliver, Dominic and Elías set about gathering all the daffodils they needed.

The grumpy women

As I’ve alluded to there were absolutely countless daffodils.  Even the boundless enthusiasm of three boys intent on daffodil projects couldn’t hope to make a noticeable difference to their number.  Although this view wasn’t shared by a couple of ladies who arrived a couple of minutes later…

They began to grumble: “You shouldn’t be letting your children do that.  Our taxes pay for this park you know.”

And yea did the grumpy women wax great wrath for the destruction of daffodils, and for such a crime did they call down a plague of…

Actually, yes. That’s pretty much the size of it. Despite having been told that the park-keeper had expressly authorised it, they knew better. Wordsworth’s host of golden daffodils was there to be watched, not for rolling up your sleeves and getting involved with.

Time to dance

Which got me thinking…

…if I sanitise God and simplify him so that can admire his beauty (like, perhaps, I do on this blog)

…if I complain when people ask awkward questions that upset the balance

…if I make following him an intellectual exercise and fail to get stuck in to the messy areas of God’s kingdom…

…am I really any better than the grumpy women?  Have I forgotten that my father is too huge to be spoiled by a few of his toddlers mucking around at the edges? And shouldn’t I learn from my own little ones, roll up my sleeves, and get joyfully stuck into a little bit of mess?

“…and then my heart with pleasure fills,

And dances with the daffodils”

William Wordsworth – 1807


© 2012 Paul Brownnutt

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Being God's Toddler by Paul Brownnutt is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.