Loyd C. Taylor
Sixty-five White Daisies and Ten
The story of Frank and Viola’s Diamond anniversary.
Frank was ninety and seven;
Viola, just five days more.
Today he would walk two pathways;
one he had not walked before.
One trip he had been planning
for thirty and one days or so;
the other, he had made ready for
eighty and three years ago.
Viola and Frank loved each other,
as the silver revealed every year.
Their touch still held love’s passion;
separation was their only fear.
Today was a very special day
that they would share again,
celebrating their anniversary
of sixty-five years and ten.
Frank headed down a pathway
he had trod so many times,
to a garden planted for his love
twenty-five springs since the chimes.
That year, and those that followed,
Frank made it his solemn routine
to pluck a white daisy for each year,
then present them to his queen.
Viola loved the white daisy,
For to her, love’s story it told;
The petals stood for purity,
surrounding a circle of gold.
Frank loved Viola so very much,
pleasing her was his heart’s desire;
Viola loved Frank in the same way;
of the daisies she never did tire.
Each year the bouquet had grown
as Frank fulfilled his quest again,
smiling as he thought of giving her
the sixty-five white daisies and ten.
He stopped under the shade
of an aged crabapple tree,
where he had asked for Viola’s hand
while resting on one knee.
Then, making his way to the rows
of white daisies standing tall,
he would pluck the pretty flowers
counting sixty-five and ten in all.
Then, smiling he made his way
up the pathway towards home,
stopping again under his friend,
shaded by its green leafy dome.
He glanced then heavenward,
feeling heaviness in his chest;
there appeared a pathway in the clouds
as he sat down a while to rest.
Viola sat in their sunroom
as six and thirty chimed;
Frank was late, which troubled her,
for his walks were so well timed.
Then she feebly made her way
to where Frank had proposed.
She saw him lying in the shade,
sleeping, or so she supposed.
She noticed the beautiful white daisies
then came close and knelt by her man.
She felt his pulse and then wept,
as she told him she loved him, again.
She laid her head on his shoulder,
then gently reached for the bouquet;
one by one she counted each flower
Frank had picked for her on that day.
Sixty-five and ten white daisies,
one for each of their happy years;
she drew them close to her heart,
and watered them with her tears.
It was one and three days later
that a neighbor decided to call;
they were found holding each other
and sixty-five and ten daises in all.
That week people came from all over,
to pay respect and say goodbye;
soon Frank and Viola’s grave was covered
with white daisies piled high.
They had traveled many years together
on this earth where their story began;
now they’re walking the pathway of gold
in that place with an eternal span.
So, when you see white daisies,
think of Frank and Viola now and then;
and remember this sad love story,
of sixty-five white daises and ten.
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Poet's Notes about The Poem
“Sixty-five White Daisies and Ten” is based on a true story about a friend of mine’s brother, Frank, and his wife, Viola. The other parts are simply a product of my imagination.
When I see the white daisy,
I notice how the pure white petals seem to be protecting the center golden pod. It symbolizes to me the strength of purity.
The number of pedals symbolizes the longevity of years of marriage.
The circle of gold in the center symbolizes the unity of the two lives becoming one. Altogether, I think it is a beautiful symbol of the idea of true intimacy and love.
The seventy-fifth Wedding Anniversary is symbolized by the gift of a
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