marked I where the bolt of Cupid fell.

It fell upon a little western flower,

Before milk-white, now purple with love’s wound.”

The course of true love never did run smooth. Such a theme many folk may remember whilst gazing back wistfully at their own life – perhaps for the fortunate amongst us, it may cause us to recall the barbs and thorns of love’s flower, making its eventual bloom even more enduring and resplendent. After all, the flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.

As we feel the warmth of the summer sun upon our backs, the green grass on our feet, and the riotous kaleidoscope of blossoming flowers in our eyes, it is hard to imagine how this world so full of hope and life could have ever sprung from dark times. And yet, like love – we know it to be inevitable, and beyond our control. One may as well try to stop the flowers from growing, as dictate the course of true love.

Such is the message in Shakespeare’s immortal work, a Midsummer Night’s Dream – a beloved play that twists together the worlds of fantasy and reality. But the lords of neither world – neither Theseus of Athens, nor Oberon of the fairies, can for all their meddling control love. It is a force beyond them both. When Theseus tries to dictate marriage, the lovers flee – when Oberon and Puck try to fix things with supernatural trickery, love proves to be something that cannot be directed. Only when free from these constraints, does the love between the four Athenian youths resolve itself into something beautiful.

As we consider this, we may consider the flowers that we see blooming around us. We may walk through a forest or a park and see them in their rainbow multitudes – or they may be found in the most unexpected places. A crack in a pavement, or sprouting from a brick wall – or the tiny blooms nestled among a patch of moss – flowers grow in adversity all around us. Let them. They are thriving, made all the more beautiful by their refusal to conform. Let them be unexpected stains of sweet colour in our lives.

Perhaps it is this, the uncontrollable, vibrant beauty of a single flower that inspired Shakespeare’s love potion. And as the season turns to midsummer, we pay homage to the inimitable bard with our Magna Midsummer Night pen – our humble attempt to distill the magic of the Dream into something to be held and cherished for generations. Patterned in gorgeous, swirling purple, just as Cupid’s arrow stained the white flower purple – our pen shall bless your white pages with ink. The swirling pearlescent patterns speak of the ever-flowing, untameable nature of love – like Oberon, the sterling silver cap bands attempt to constrain it, but the pattern continues, free.

If I had a magic potion to lay upon your eyelids, dear reader, then I would wish only this: let the next flower that your eyes gaze upon be a reminder of the beauty and the inevitability of life, and of love.