Flowers in Mrs. Dalloway
Upon reading just a few pages from Mrs. Dalloway, the imagery of nature and flowers becomes clear and meaningful. The first exposure of Clarissa explains that she is on the way to the flower shop to choose flowers for her party. Her complex personality is repetitively related to and soothed by various images of nature and flowers. Clarissa is characterized by her ability to enjoy nearly everything, which can be rooted in her assertion that if she behaved like a lady, no matter what the circumstance or trying situation, then the Gods ability to spoil human lives would be put out. Clearly, she optimistically looks out onto the world over her “arms full of sweet peas.” Because of the joy that she has found and the association that Clarissa has formed with flowers, she also uses them to fulfill her “purpose” in life. The flowers are the starting point of her party, which is a means to gather people together. Clarissa feels her role is to be a meeting-point for others. Another important reference to flowers occurs when Clarissa describes her feeling for Sally as a match that burns in a crocus. Similarly, the most exquisite moment of Clarissa’s life occurred in Bourton when Sally picked a flower and kissed her on the lips. This revelation of her deep feelings and their attributions to nature shows the passionate love that she felt for Sally, especially when compared against Richard. Clarissa’s relationship with Richard is not paralleled with nature, and their marriage seems to be more of a compromise; however, Richard seems to understand the assurance that she finds in flowers as he hands her a gift of roses. Many other characters are enlightened by the beauty of nature as well, and the constant flower references hide deeper information. Peter encounters the ideal lady on the street who is wearing a red carnation, and by that flower he concludes that she is not married and not rich. Also, his fiancé is called Daisy, a very plain and humble...
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