The Perfect Imperfect Love

Shawn Tyler Hardin (Greensboro, NC)

One looks upon the rose

And cannot but help
To admire it’s beauty
And one cannot help
But to want that rose
To pick and cherish it
Not a soul in the world
Would not love to have
A rose of its own
No soul in history has
Gazed upon it and said
It is not a glorious thing of red
It’s beauty praised
Throughout the world
The symbol of true love
It is undeniable
How brilliant it is
To have to admire
Clip off a rose’s thorns
 To smooth it out
Shaping it how they please
To hold, and to adore
Not problematic in the least
At least, without its thorns
But should it come
With those thorns still there
Most admirers turn away
Not worth the pricks
Not flawless enough
To warrant the trouble they say
Yet a rose is not a rose
Without those difficult thorns
That scare the others away
And the blood red flower
Appreciated so much more
When it has the thorns
Because the thorns are a test
And the flower the reward
Which make the thorns worthwhile
I would have no rose
But one with thorns
And I’d adore every single one
Because the Rose is worth it
And the thorns precious as well
Because they’re each part of the rose
I would take up that rose
Any day, thorns and all
And love it with all my heart
And even as that rose
Wilts with time
As its beauty fades away
It still would be worth
Bearing every single thorn
Up to its very last day
Time may take its toll
But my rose I will still adore
Until either that rose is gone
Until either that rose is gone
Shriveled back into dust
Or until I pass away
And no matter which
I will have been glad
I had that rose along the way.
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