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Poem by William Cowper


The Rose


The rose had been washed, just washed in a shower
Which Mary to Anna conveyed;
The plentiful moisture encumbered the flower,
And weighed down its beautiful head.

The cup was all filled, and the leaves were all wet,
And it seemed, to a fanciful view,
To weep for the buds it had left with regret
On the flourishing bush where it grew.

I hastily seized it, unfit as it was
For a nosegay, so dripping and drowned,
And swinging it rudely, too rudely, alas!
I snapped it; it fell to the ground.

And such, I exclaimed, is the pitiless part
Some act by the delicate mind,
Regardless of wringing and breaking a heart
Already to sorrow resigned.

This elegant rose, had I shaken it less,
Might have bloomed with its owner awhile;
And the tear that is wiped with a little address,
May be followed perhaps by a smile. 



William Cowper


William Cowper's other poems:
  1. To The Rev. Mr. Newton
  2. The Dog and the Water Lily
  3. The Diverting History of John Gilpin
  4. The New Convert
  5. Abuse of the Gospel


Poems of the other poets with the same name:

  • Samuel Coleridge The Rose ("As late each flower that sweetest blows")
  • Robert Southey The Rose ("Nay EDITH! spare the rose!--it lives--it lives")
  • Richard Lovelace The Rose ("Sweet serene skye-like Flower")
  • William Browne The Rose ("A ROSE, as fair as ever saw the North")
  • Isabella Crawford The Rose ("The Rose was given to man for this")
  • Sara Teasdale The Rose ("BENEATH my chamber window")

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