By John Galsworthy
Starry-eyed is April morn,
Rain bells glitter on the thorn.
Birds are tuning down the lane
Patter song of fallen rain.
Spring can grieve, but Spring can be
Very life of minstrelsy!
-excerpt from Moods, Songs and Doggerels. Reprinted by permission of Charles Scribner's Sons in the anthology Through Fairy Halls of My Bookhouse (Olive Beaupre Miller, Chicago The Bookhouse for Children Publishers, 1920)
This spring maiden serves the Queen in her dress and care. She is adorned in dried tulips with birch bodice, a lichen cummerbund and a tulip rose for decoration.
Sweet babe! a golden cradle holds thee,
And soft the snow-white fleece enfolds thee:
In an airy bower I'll watch thy sleeping,
Where branchy trees to the breeze are sweeping.
-1st verse by Edward Walsh
This spring dress made of birch and brambles belongs to The Fairy Nurse who watches over The Changeling, a human child that this clan has stolen and replaced in its cradle with one of their sickly fairy babies. If you "over look a child" which means to be envious of it, the fairies will whisk it away. Here, The Fairy Nurse has the babe in her ever watchful gaze as she hangs onto a pussy willow branch. She is awaiting the arrival of her clan of hunters and gatherers from the wood and waters wild to bring the babe food. The stolen child will be in her good care, and as he grows, will forget his human mother. When he cries, he will reach for The Fairy Nurse instead.
Tonic of the Woods
the inspiration behind the creations