Success by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Jeff Zablow's Perennial Beds Pittsburgh, PA, 7/10/07

I have read this often, and attempt to emulate it in my own life, whether gardening to attract winged beauties, or with family and friends, in my spiritual life, and in the field, as I attempt to capture ever more beautiful images of butterflies, darners, wildflowers, whatever . . . .


To laugh often and to love much . . .
To win the respect of intelligent persons
and the affections of children . . . To earn
the approbation of honest critics and to
endure the betrayal of false friends , , ,
To appreciate beauty; to give of one’s self . . .
To leave the world a bit better whether by
a healthy child, a garden patch, or
a redeemed social condition . . .
To laugh and play with enthusiasm and to sing with
exultation and to know that one life
has breathed easier because you have lived –
. . . That is to succeed . . .

–Ralph Waldo Emerson


This perennial garden that I loved brought butterflies from great distances, nurtured scores of butterflies, bees, moths and ruby-throateds, the latter coming every hour on the hour. It brought joy to family, though concealed from the world, as it grew behind the house, and remained unknown to most.


3 thoughts on “Success by Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1. A beautiful garden for beautiful flying insects; a beautiful garden for one to enjoy color and sweet fragrances; a beautiful garden for the creative designer to be proud for what it offers. Thanks for sharing


  2. Beautiful!

    I had a butterfly garden once that was amazing. I moved away and missed the flowers so much that I dreamed about it every night. Finally, I drew a sketch of the plants and wrote a letter describing each one. I mailed this to the new tenant where the garden lived. There was a five year old girl who lived there. The following spring, I received a letter from the girl (aided by her mother). The plants were starting to bloom and the butterflies had come! She told me she was very happy and the only girl in her class to have a butterfly garden. I stopped dreaming about the garden after that, as I knew it was loved and doing a great job at feeding butterflies and making people happy.

    Thanks for this post, Jeff.

    Liked by 1 person

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