Winter Rose

I wander through my garden
scuffing orange oak leaves
and crumbling vines
finding seed pods opened wide
which having performed
their service
burst their hearts and died

With fingers coldly grasping pruners
I'm searching for that one last rose
as scents of autumn fill my nostrils
and nothing in my garden grows
Searching for that one reminder
of honeyed summer breezes
replaced by smoky autumn pyres
and coming winters frost -laced freezes

Already the trees are barren
and canes are bowing
to winter winds to come
I look, I bend, I stalk
a hunter...
hoping I can find just one

just one last rose
her head held high
stretched to catch
the waning sun
her petals bunched
but still defiant
undaunted by the snows to come

and lo...
she stands
off in the corner
sheilded by the garden wall
that one last rose
a sentinel
a thorny princess
standing tall

I cannot reach her
tho' I try
she nods smugly
with rosy attitude
the pruners fall
from my hand
I cannot breech her

I turn away roseless
leaving her to die
a natural death
and a faint whiff
of her perfume on the air
haunts me
"no scentless hothouse blossom
am I"
she taunts me

I walk away slowly
one last glimpse
bejewels the dusk
I stop
I turn
and then salute her
savoring the hint of musk

She nods again
and whispers
and my heart begins to sing
for she stated
oh so simply
"I will see you...
come next spring"

By Denise Oliver-Velez

Image from: http://www.istockphoto.com/


Fall, 2003
"Robin Redbreast" by William Allingham

Summer, 2003
"My Garden" by Thomas Edwin Brown

Spring, 2003
"Reverie" by Robert B. Martin, Jr.

Winter, 2002
"Written in March" by William Wordsworth

Fall, 2002
"October's Bright Blue Weather" by Helen Hunt Jackson

Spring and Summer, 2002
"A Passing Glimpse" by Robert Frost

Winter, 2001
"Fire and Ice" by Robert Frost

Summer, 2001
"Memory" by Thomas Bailey Aldrich

Winter, 2000
"The Heart of the Tree" by Henry Cuyler Bunner

Summer, 2000
"Red Geraniums" by Martha Haskell Clark

Spring, 2000
"Immortality" by Joseph Jefferson

Winter, 1999
"Everest" by Eunice Tietjens

Fall, 1999
"Tree at my Window" by Robert Frost

Summer, 1999
"Climb The Mountains" by John Muir

Spring, 1999
"The Rose Still Grows Beyond the Wall" by A.L. Frink

Winter, 1998
"The Runaway" by Robert Frost

Fall, 1998
"Hope" by Emily Dickinson

Summer, 1998
"A Patch of Roses" by Gail Lemnah Barnett

Spring, 1998
"Song of the River" by William Randolph Hearst

January, 1998
"Birches" by Robert Frost

November and December, 1997
"One Last Rose" by Gail Lemnah Barnett

October, 1997
"Far From the Madding Crowd" by Nixon Waterman

September, 1997
"Kiss From a Rose" by Seal, from the Album: "Seal"

August, 1997
"Summer Rose Saga" by Gail Lemnah Barnett

July, 1997
"A Bird Came Down the Walk" by Emily Dickinson

June, 1997
"The Road Not Taken" by Robert Frost

May, 1997
"The Path That Leads to Nowhere" by Corinne Roosevelt Robinson

April, 1997
"The Firefly" by Jane Stuart

March, 1997
"Plant a Tree" by Lucy Larcom

February, 1997
"The Daffodils" by William Wordsworth

January, 1997
"Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" by Robert Frost

December, 1996
"Wintering Rosarians" by Gail Lemnah Barnett

November, 1996
"'Tis the Last Rose of Summer" by Thomas Moore

October, 1996
"Autumn Chant" by Edna St. Vincent Millay

September, 1996
"The Fish" by Elizabeth Bishop

August, 1996
"Departmental" by Robert Frost

July, 1996
"City Flies" by Alan Van Dine

June, 1996
"My Neighbor's Roses" by A.L. Gruber

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