Flowers and fruits are always fit presents; flowers, because they are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty outvalues all of the utilities of the world. These gay natures contrast with the somewhat stern countenance of ordinary nature: they are like music heard out of a work-house.
RALPH WALDO EMERSON, Essays
Our highest assurance of the goodness of Providence seems to me to rest in the flowers. All other things, our powers, our desires, our food, are all really necessary for our existence in the first instance. But this rose is an extra. Its smell and its color are an embellishment of life, not a condition of it. It is only goodness which gives extras, and so I say again that we have much to hope from the flowers.
SIR ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE, The Naval Treaty
I would far rather have two or three lilies of the valley gathered for me by a person I like, than the most expensive bouquet that could be bought!
ELIZABETH GASKELL, Wives and Daughters
We grow like flowers, and bear desire, The odor of the human flowers.
RICHARD HENRY STODDARD, The Squire of Low Degree–The Princess Answers
Flowers have an expression of countenance as much as men and animals. Some seem to smile; some have a sad expression; some are pensive and diffident; others again are plain, honest and upright, like the broad-faced sunflower and the hollyhock.
HENRY WARD BEECHER, Star Papers
Flowers are words which even a babe may understand.
ARTHUR CLEVELAND COXE, The Singing of Birds
I love to smell flowers in the dark … You get hold of their soul then.
LUCY MAUD MONTGOMERY, Anne’s House of Dreams
I hate flowers — I paint them because they’re cheaper than models and they don’t move.
GEORGIA O’KEEFFE, New York Herald Tribune, Apr. 18, 1954
Flowers … that are so pathetic in their beauty, frail as the clouds, and in their colouring as gorgeous as the heavens, had through thousands of years been the heritage of children—honoured as the jewellery of God only by them—when suddenly the voice of Christianity, counter-signing the voice of infancy, raised them to a grandeur transcending the Hebrew throne, although founded by God himself, and pronounced Solomon in all his glory not to be arrayed like one of these.
THOMAS DE QUINCEY, Confessions of an English Opium-Eater
Flowers grow out of dark moments.
CORITA KENT, Moments of 1984
GEORGE HERBERT, Life
Flowers have spoken to me more than I can tell in written words. They are the hieroglyphics of angels, loved by all men for the beauty of the character, though few can decypher even fragments of their meaning.
LYDIA MARIA CHILD, Letters from New York
Many people have never learned to see the beauty of flowers, especially those that grow unnoticed. For instance, when you walk outside and look down at your feet, you may see tiny flowers nestled in the moss and clover hiding under a curled fern. Most people just step on them. I paint them.
ERIKA JUST, Flowers
CHARLES BAUDELAIRE, “Elevation”
What this old world needs is more bouquets handed around to folks when they are alive and kicking. Flowers don’t do a dead one much good.
ROBERT ELLIOTT GONZALES, Poems and Paragraphs
Our finest flowers are often weeds transplanted.
ELBERT HUBBARD, The American Bible
Flowers are the sweetest things that God ever made, and forgot to put a soul into.
HENRY WARD BEECHER, Proverbs from Plymouth Pulpit
Full many a flower is born to blush unseen.
JAMES JOYCE, Ulysses
The flower fades that is not looked upon.
EDWARD COUNSEL, Maxims
JOHN KEATS, “Faery Songs”
EDWIN CURRAN, “Flowers”
JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL, To the Dandelion
There are always flowers for those who want to see them.
HENRI MATISSE, attributed, The Colour of Love
Earth laughs in flowers.
RALPH WALDO EMERSON, “Hamatreya”
THOMAS GRAY, “An Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard”
I’d go without food if I could have a flower.
CARYL CHURCHILL, A Dream Play