When the Rose is Faded

last year's rose

When the rose is faded,
Memory may still dwell on
Her beauty shadowed,
And the sweet smell gone.

That vanishing loveliness,
That burdening breath,
No bond of life hath then,
Nor grief of death.

‘Tis the immortal thought
Whose passion still
Makes the changing
The unchangeable.

Oh, thus thy beauty,
Loveliest on earth to me,
Dark with no sorrow, shines
And burns, with thee.

~ Walter de la Mare


2 thoughts on “When the Rose is Faded

  1. Hi Ka,

    This post reminded me of a poem I wrote a little while back…

    rose poem for gloria
    by lisa nackan

    i know you have a special connection to flowers
    and i’ve noticed your home filled with them
    the roses that guard the window of the room we sit in
    that reach upwards try to see in

    once i found a tiny flower petal attached to my clothes
    and i kept it between pieces of tape to hold its colour and it has
    that tiny shrivelled piece of flower meaningless to everyone else
    yet i can’t throw it away

    i know i give things my own meaning
    last weekend i imagined myself falling palms up into roses
    outside your house or mine it didn’t matter
    because the pain would be the same

    thorns ripped off the rose bush into me
    scars on the branches numbed my pain inside
    once you described how with a rose
    you have to enjoy its beauty while it lasts

    because eventually the petals are going to drop and lose their colour
    but we didn’t talk about what happens after you prune the branches of a rose plant
    how new buds grow new petals new flowers that you can savour
    until they too will lose their colour and fall

    i recently learned that of all the flowers they say that the rose
    has the highest spiritual vibration
    there is something about a rose that lasts beyond the moment
    there is something about a rose that is true

    there are no names for some colours they show
    they just are being the way they need to be
    living and dying at the same time
    the rose in my mind needs water

    green hidden by ebony nights
    petals you can’t see yet know that they are there
    the streak of life under thorns
    that state their presence in a different way

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