Tag Archives: William Cullen Bryant

For Lovers (or Potential Lovers) of Herbal Lore–Beth Trissel


herb garden“The intense perfumes of the wild herbs as we trod them underfoot made us feel almost drunk.”  ~Jacqueline du Pre

“More in the garden grows , than the witch knows.”

“Sell your coat and buy betony.”

“No ear hath heard no tongue can tell, The virtue of the pimpernel”

“Treoil , vervain , st. John’s wort dill

Hinder Witches of all their will.”

English country garden flowers and herbs“The air was fragrant with a thousand trodden aromatic herbs, with fields of lavender, and with the brightest roses blushing in tufts all over the meadows…” ~William Cullen Bryant

“Here’s flowers for you; Hot lavender, mints, savoury, marjoram; The marigold, that goes to bed wi’ the sun, And with him rises weeping…”~William Shakespeare, 1611.

“Sow fennel , Sow sorrow .”

“And because the Breath of Flowers is farre Sweeter in the Aire (where it comes and Gose, like the Warbling of Musick) than in the hand, therefore nothing is more fit for delight, than to know what be the Flowers and the Plants that doe best perfume the Aire.” ~ Francis Bacon, 1625.

“Plant your sage and rue together,

The sage will grow in any weather .”

“Snakes will not go  Where geraniums grow.”

Formal Garden, Flower Bed, Old Ruin, Gothic Style, Monastery, Abbey,  Church, herbs“My gardens sweet, enclosed with walles strong, embarked with benches to sytt and take my rest. The Knotts so enknotted, it cannot be exprest. With arbours and alys so pleasant and so dulce, the pestylant ayers with flavours to repulse.” ~Thomas Cavendish, 1532.

“Where the yarrow grows , there is one who knows.”

If ye would herbal magic make

Be sure the spell in rhyme be spake.”

herb garden with chairWoe to the lad  without a rowan tree-god.”

“The fair maid who , the first of May

Goes to the fields at break of day

And washes in dew from the hawthorn tree ,

Will ever after handsome be.”

St. John’s wort and cyclamen in your bed-chambers keep , From evil spells and witcheries , To guard you in your sleep .”

“I borage , give courage .”

“Good morrow, good Yarrow, good morrow to thee. Send me this night my true love to see, The clothes that he’ll wear, the colour of his hair. And if he’ll wed me…”  ~Danaher, 1756.

“When daisies pied and violets blue, and lady-smocks all silver white. And Cuckoo-buds of yellow hue, do paint the meadows with delight.” ~William Shakespeare, 1595.

Rowan tree and red-thread

Put the witches to their speed.”

“Much Virtue in Herbs, little in Men.”

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Poor Richard’s Almanac

Faerie-Folks , Are in old oaks .”

***I’m teaching an Herbal Lore Workshop, actually, several this year. The first is with Savvy Authors from Mar 11, 2013 – Apr 7, 2013. For more information and to register for the workshop click:  Herbal Lore and the Historic Medicinal Uses of Herbs

“Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.”~Fall Quotes and Images–Beth Trissel


Fall blew into the Shenandoah Valley this week with a big temperature drop and welcome relief from the heat. For most of the summer the wind is silent, but it’s really talking now, whistling around the old red barn and rattling the house. The swifts still swoop over our pond in vigorous pursuit of insects and we’ll have many summery days yet before autumn settles in for good, but the season is a changing which inspires me to post some lovely autumnal pics with some of my favorite quotes.
Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
~George Eliot
No Spring nor Summer Beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one Autumnal face.
~John Donne
Elegy IX–The Autumnal.
Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile.
~William Cullen Bryant
“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.”
~John Keats Ode to Autumn.
(***Pic of the Alleghenies taken by my mother)
Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.
~Stanley Horowitz
Autumn’s the mellow time.
~William Allingham
Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.~Albert Camus
I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house. So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.
~Nathaniel Hawthorne
Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees.
~Faith Baldwin
The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry’s cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.
The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I’ll put a trinket on.
~Emily Dickinson
Nature XXVII, Autumn.
Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
~Emily Bronte
And from one of my favorite authors:
“It was one of those autumn days, crisp and clear, when the sky has a pellucid quality which is rarely seen in other seasons.  The hedge maple had turned a brilliant yellow and the beech trees above the hedges were a deeper gold. A few hardy summer wild flowers such as knapweed, yarrow, and cranesbill still starred the verges and banks, brave survivors of summer heat and the ferocity of the recent storms.”
***Royalty free images and some taken by my talented family.

“Faerie-Folks Are in Old Oaks” ~Herbal Quotes & Images


Intermingled with the lovely, poetic quotes are the simple Old herbal sayings. I enjoy both and hope you will take pleasure in this sampling.

What can kill , can cure.

The intense perfumes of the wild herbs as we trod them underfoot made us feel almost drunk.  ~Jacqueline du Pre

More in the garden grows , than the witch knows.

Sell your coat and buy betony.

Thine eyes are springs in whose serene And silent waters heaven is seen. Their lashes are the herbs that look On their young figures in the brook. ~William C. Bryant

No ear hath heard no tongue can tell, The virtue of the pimpernel

Treoil , vervain , st. John’s wort dill
Hinder Witches of all their will .

“The air was fragrant with a thousand trodden aromatic herbs, with fields of lavender, and with the brightest roses blushing in tufts all over the meadows…” ~William Cullen Bryant

“Here’s flowers for you; Hot lavender, mints, savoury, marjoram; The marigold, that goes to bed wi’ the sun, And with him rises weeping…”~William Shakespeare, 1611.

Where Rosemary grows , the missus is master .

Be silent as the sacred oak !~

Sow fennel , Sow sorrow .

And because the Breath of Flowers is farre Sweeter in the Aire (where it comes and Gose, like the Warbling of Musick) than in the hand, therefore nothing is more fit for delight, than to know what be the Flowers and the Plants that doe best perfume the Aire. ~ Francis Bacon, 1625.

Only the wicked grow parsley.

Plant your sage and rue together,
The sage will grow in any weather .

Snakes will not go  Where geraniums grow.

My gardens sweet, enclosed with walles strong, embarked with benches to sytt and take my rest. The Knotts so enknotted, it cannot be exprest. With arbours and alys so pleasant and so dulce, the pestylant ayers with flavours to repulse. ~Thomas Cavendish, 1532.

Where the yarrow grows , there is one who knows .

If ye would herbal magic make
Be sure the spell in rhyme be spake

Woe to the lad  without a rowan tree-god.

When daisies pied and violets blue, and lady-smocks all silver white. And Cuckoo-buds of yellow hue, do paint the meadows with delight. ~William Shakespeare, 1595.

Rowan tree and red-thread
Put the witches to their speed

Eat an apple going to bed , make the doctor beg his bread .

The fair maid who , the first of May
Goes to the fields at break of day
And washes in dew from the hawthorn tree ,
Will ever after handsome be .

What is Paradise? But a Garden, an Orchard of Trees and Herbs, full of pleasure, and nothing there but delights. ~William Lawson, 1618.

Flowers out of season , sorrow without reason .

He would live for aye , must eat sage in May .

One to rot , one to grow
One for the pigeon and one for the crow .

Women with child that eat quinces will bear wise children. ~Dodoens, 1578.

St. John’s wort and cyclamen in your bed-chambers keep ,
From evil spells and witcheries , To guard you in your sleep .

I borage , give courage .

“Good morrow, good Yarrow, good morrow to thee. Send me this night my true love to see, The clothes that he’ll wear, the colour of his hair. And if he’ll wed me…” ~Danaher, 1756.

No mistletoe , no luck .

Faerie-Folks , Are in old oaks .

“There’s fennel for you, and columbines; there’s rue for you; and here’s some for me; we may call it herb of grace o’Sundays.”
William Shakespeare, ‘Hamlet’

“Much Virtue in Herbs, little in Men.”
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Poor Richard’s Almanac

***Royalty free images and some of our garden

Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn. ~Elizabeth Lawrence


Fall blew into the Shenandoah Valley last night with a big temperature drop and some much-needed rain. For most of the summer the wind is silent, but it’s really talking now, whistling around the old red barn and rattling the house.  The swifts still swoop over our pond in vigorous pursuit of insects and we’ll have many summery days yet before autumn settles in for good, but the season is a changing which inspires me to post some lovely autumnal pics with some of my favorite quotes.

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
~George Eliot

No Spring nor Summer Beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one Autumnal face.
~John Donne
Elegy IX–The Autumnal.

Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile.
~William Cullen Bryant

“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.”
~John Keats Ode to Autumn.

(***Pic of the Alleghenies taken by my mother)

Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.
~Stanley Horowitz

Autumn’s the mellow time.
~William Allingham

Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.~Albert Camus

I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house. So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.
~Nathaniel Hawthorne

Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees.
~Faith Baldwin

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry’s cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.
The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I’ll put a trinket on.
~Emily Dickinson
Nature XXVII, Autumn.

Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
~Emily Bronte

And from one of my favorite authors:

“It was one of those autumn days, crisp and clear, when the sky has a pellucid quality which is rarely seen in other seasons.  The hedge maple had turned a brilliant yellow and the beech trees above the hedges were a deeper gold. A few hardy summer wild flowers such as knapweed, yarrow, and cranesbill still starred the verges and banks, brave survivors of summer heat and the ferocity of the recent storms.”  ~Miss Read, Changes at Fairacre

“What Can Kill, Can Cure.”~


Intermingled with the lovely, poetic quotes are the simple Old herbal sayings. I enjoy both and hope you will take pleasure in this sampling.

What can kill , can cure.

The intense perfumes of the wild herbs as we trod them underfoot made us feel almost drunk.  ~Jacqueline du Pre

More in the garden grows , than the witch knows.

Sell your coat and buy betony.

Thine eyes are springs in whose serene And silent waters heaven is seen. Their lashes are the herbs that look On their young figures in the brook. ~William C. Bryant

No ear hath heard no tongue can tell, The vitue of the pimpernel

Treoil , vervain , st. John’s wort dill
Hinder Witches of all their will .

“The air was fragrant with a thousand trodden aromatic herbs, with fields of lavender, and with the brightest roses blushing in tufts all over the meadows…” ~William Cullen Bryant

“Here’s flowers for you; Hot lavender, mints, savoury, marjoram; The marigold, that goes to bed wi’ the sun, And with him rises weeping…”~William Shakespeare, 1611.

Where Rosemary grows , the missus is master .


Be silent as the sacred oak!~

Sow fennel , Sow sorrow .

And because the Breath of Flowers is farre Sweeter in the Aire (where it comes and Gose, like the Warbling of Musick) than in the hand, therefore nothing is more fit for delight, than to know what be the Flowers and the Plants that doe best perfume the Aire. ~ Francis Bacon, 1625.

Only the wicked grow parsley.

Plant your sage and rue together,
The sage will grow in any weather .

Snakes will not go  Where geraniums grow.

My gardens sweet, enclosed with walles strong, embarked with benches to sytt and take my rest. The Knotts so enknotted, it cannot be exprest. With arbours and alys so pleasant and so dulce, the pestylant ayers with flavours to repulse. ~Thomas Cavendish, 1532.

Where the yarrow grows , there is one who knows .

If ye would herbal magic make
Be sure the spell in rhyme be spake

Woe to the lad  without a rowan tree-god.

When daisies pied and violets blue, and lady-smocks all silver white. And Cuckoo-buds of yellow hue, do paint the meadows with delight. ~William Shakespeare, 1595.

Rowan tree and red-thread
Put the witches to their speed

Eat an apple going to bed , make the doctor beg his bread .

The fair maid who , the first of May
Goes to the fields at break of day
And washes in dew from the hawthorn tree ,
Will ever after handsome be .

What is Paradise? But a Garden, an Orchard of Trees and Herbs, full of pleasure, and nothing there but delights. ~William Lawson, 1618.

Flowers out of season , sorrow without reason .

He would live for aye , must eat sage in May .

One to rot , one to grow
One for the pigeon and one for the crow .

Women with child that eat quinces will bear wise children. ~Dodoens, 1578.

St. John’s wort and cyclamen in your bed-chambers keep ,
From evil spells and witcheries , To guard you in your sleep .

I borage , give courage .

“Good morrow, good Yarrow, good morrow to thee. Send me this night my true love to see, The clothes that he’ll wear, the colour of his hair. And if he’ll wed me…” ~Danaher, 1756.

No mistletoe , no luck .

Faerie-Folks , Are in old oaks .

“There’s fennel for you, and columbines; there’s rue for you; and here’s some for me; we may call it herb of grace o’Sundays.”
William Shakespeare, ‘Hamlet’

“Much Virtue in Herbs, little in Men.”
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Poor Richard’s Almanac

Nature is a writer’s best friend ~Agavé Powers


I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.  ~ e.e. cummings

The poetry of the earth is never dead.  ~John Keats

To sit in the shade on a fine day and look upon verdure is the most perfect refreshment.  ~Jane Austen

Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile.
~William Cullen Bryant

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more.
~George Gordon, Lord Byron, Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage

I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.  ~John Muir

Man’s heart away from nature becomes hard.  ~Standing Bear

I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.  ~George Washington Carver

The human spirit needs places where nature has not been rearranged by the hand of man.  ~Author Unknown

You can’t be suspicious of a tree, or accuse a bird or a squirrel of subversion or challenge the ideology of a violet.  ~Hal Borland

Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.  ~John Muir

Some keep the Sabbath going to Church,
I keep it staying at Home -
With a bobolink for a Chorister,
And an Orchard, for a Dome.
~Emily Dickinson

Great things are done when men and mountains meet.  This is not done by jostling in the street.  ~William Blake

Fieldes have eies and woods have eares.  ~John Heywood, 1565

Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.  ~Rachel Carson

Climb up on some hill at sunrise.  Everybody needs perspective once in a while, and you’ll find it there.  ~Robb Sagendorph

Nature is the art of God.  ~Thomas Browne

Earth’s crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
~Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
~Emily Bronte

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry’s cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.
The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I’ll put a trinket on.
Emily Dickinson
Nature XXVII, Autumn.

Autumn’s the mellow time.
~William Allingham

A Fragrant Connection to The Past Through Herbs&Heirloom Flowers


Being passionate about the past, I relish a connection to those who’ve gone before us.  I’m fascinated with history and love old homes, historic sites, all that ties us to the richness of bygone ages. Intrigued with herbal lore, I often use it in my writing.

Herbs influenced every facet of life in pre-modern times and have changed little over the centuries. When I hold an aromatic sprig of rosemary in my hand, I’m touching the same plant beloved by the ancients. Some heirloom roses hail from the glory days of Rome.

To further that sense of oneness, and for their many uses, I grow a variety of herbs.  I suppose they’re most well known for their flavorful addition to many foods, herbal teas…Parsley, basil, sage, chives and dill are several in my kitchen garden.  Lavender and scented geraniums, to name a few, are wonderful for their scent alone.

Ladies once wafted the delicate perfume of toilet water.  Porcelain bowls filled with colorful potpourri scented musty parlors.  Medicinal herbs comprised the bulk of ones health needs and still do for some individuals.  Not to mention all the herbs in supplements and medicines today.  I knock back Oregamax and herbal tea to build up my immunity.  Plus, plus.

Then there’s the mostly forgotten language of flowers.  Herbs were tucked into nosegays not only for their beauty and fragrance but their significance…such as rosemary, the herb of remembrance.  A sprig of thyme symbolized courage.  Violas, also called ‘heartsease,’ were used in love potions.  And so on.

Before taking the leap into novel writing, I had a modest herb business.  I also gave talks on herbal lore to local groups much as Julia Maury did in my light paranormal romance Somewhere My Love.  And I was active in the garden club, but found it too much on top of all my writing groups.  I was also one of the only members in that club who actually did her own landscaping, such as it is, and got down and dirty.  It doesn’t impress me to tour your yard and be shown what the landscape designer and his or her staff has put in for you.  Get out the shovels and enlist your family.  Make your yard and garden a homegrown project.

My younger daughter is Elise is a huge help to me now, but she’s been by my side in the garden since infancy.  Now the grandbabies are coming along to ‘help.’

Speaking of family support, with the assistance of my long suffering mother, I used to grow herbs & flowers for making dried wreaths and potpourri to be sold in the fall.  Herbal and heirloom flower seedlings were raised in the small greenhouse my hubby built me and sold in the spring.  However, any profits were swiftly overrun by subsequent visits to the allergist whom I’ve seen regularly for years now and still get four shots at a crack.  Seems I developed every allergy latent within me by exposure to all these pollens.

*Note, If you’re allergic to ragweed, avoid an herb called Sweet Annie and the Artemisia family.  But I’m considered to rank in the top ten percent of allergy sufferers in the nation, so what are the odds of that?

After being run indoors and my gardening severely curtailed, I took up writing and have used my love of plants in my novels.  I’m still an avid gardener, though with shots, meds, and limits.

“Loveliest  of lovely things are they,
On earth, that soonest pass away.
The rose that lives its little hour
Is prized beyond the sculpted flower.”
~William Cullen Bryant

*My favorite rose, Abraham Darby, by English breeder David Austin.  Picture by my daughter Elise.  I highly recommend David Austin roses.  He combines the best of the old world fragrance, form, and durability with the repeat bloom of modern cultivars.

“The perfume of roses are like exquisite chords of music composed of many odor notes harmoniously blended.”
~ N F Miller

For more on my work please visit my website at: www.bethtrissel.com

Wistful for Autumn Splendor


Autumn leaves“I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house.  So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.
Nathaniel Hawthorne

“Delicious autumn!  My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
-   George Eliot

“The leaves fall, the wind blows, and the farm country slowly
changes from the summer cottons into its winter wools.”
-   Henry Beston, Northern Farm

“It was one of those perfect English autumnal days which occur more frequently in memory than in life.”
P. D. James

“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting
and autumn a mosaic of them all.”
-   Stanley Horowitz

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”~ Albert Camus

“The winds will blow their own freshness into you,
and the storms their energy,
while cares will drop away from you
like the leaves of Autumn.”
-   John Muir

“There is a harmony In autumn, and a lustre in its sky,
Which through the summer is not heard or seen,
As if it could not be, as if it had not been!”
-   Percy Bysshe Shelley

“Ho! for the leaves that eddy down,
Crumpled yellow and withered brown,
Hither and yonder and up the street
And trampled under the passing feet;
Swirling, billowing, drifting by,
With a whisper soft and a rustling sigh,
Starting aloft to windy ways,
Telling the coming of bonfire days.”
-   Grace Strickler Dawson, Bonfire Days

“In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfies
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
the grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all,
Flowers in the summer
Fires in the fall!

-   Robert Louis Stevenson, Autumn Fires

“falling leaves
hide the path
so quietly”
-   John Bailey, Autumn Haiku

“Autumn – the reprieve from Summer.”
-  Mike Garofalo,
Pulling Onions

“The Sussex lanes were very lovely in the autumn … spendthrift gold and glory of the year-end … earth scents and the sky winds and all the magic of the countryside which is ordained for the healing of the soul.”

~Monica Baldwin, I Leap over the Wall

In the garden, Autumn is, indeed the crowning glory of the year, bringing us the fruition of months of thought and care

fall picture at pumpkin patch

and toil. And at no season, safe perhaps in Daffodil time, do we get such superb color effects as from August to November.
Rose G. Kingsley
The Autumn Garden.

Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile.
William Cullen Bryant

*There’s nowhere more lovely than the Shenandoah Valley and surrounding mountains in the autumn. God’s country. ~ Beth Trissel~