by H. C. Andersen
Oh, the daisy. Andersen’s stories are really big on humanizing, or as I like to say, emotionalizing inanimate items (balls and lanterns), as well as nature, like the daisy.
The daisy is basically the sweetest, most positive, upbeat flower ever. All the other flowers think they’re much better than the daisy, in classic Andersen style, because they’re stuck up. A bird vists the daisy and kisses it and the little daisy is esactic about this. The other flowers stick up their petals.
Of course no one cares about the daisy and when the bird is captured and stuck in a cage (cause children, especially boys, are generally rather wicked in Andersen), the daisy comes along because it happens to be on the tuft of earth that’s brought to the cage.
The daisy wants to help or cheer the bird up, but cannot speak or move. The bird eventually dies of longing for freedom, and the boys bury the body.
Andersen points out the hypocrisy:
“While it was alive and sang they forgot it, and let it suffer want in the cage; now they cried over it and covered it with flowers. The piece of turf, with the little daisy on it, was thrown out on the dusty highway. Nobody thought of the flower which had felt so much for the bird and so greatly desired to comfort it” (17)
Basically the daisy had a better nature than those boys. Or, as I summed up when I read it, this is so Andersen – write about an overlooked but positive, giving organism that’s flung aside by others because the world is full of assholes.
The daisy is the best.
Andersen, Hans Christian. Classic Fairy Tales. New York: Barnes & Noble, 2012. Print.