#AtoZChallenge ‘O’ #NationalPoetryMonth ‘One Perfect Rose’ by Dorothy Parker #NPM17 #CarrotRanch

This year to celebrate National Poetry Month and to take part in the April A-Z Blogging Challenge, I’ll be posting two poems a day, one written by me and another poem written by one of my favourite poets. The title or first word of both poems will begin with the corresponding letter in the Blogging Challenge.

Today I offer you One Perfect Rose by Dorothy Parker and One Perfect Rose by Luccia Gray.

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One Perfect Rose

A single flow’r he sent me, since we met.
All tenderly his messenger he chose;
Deep-hearted, pure, with scented dew still wet –
One perfect rose.

I knew the language of the floweret;
‘My fragile leaves,’ it said, ‘his heart enclose.’
Love long has taken for his amulet
One perfect rose.

Why is it no one ever sent me yet
One perfect limousine, do you suppose?
Ah no, it’s always just my luck to get
One perfect rose. 

Dorothy Parker (1893-1967)

This poem is taken from her first book of poetry, Enough Rope (1926).

Although this poem is on a much lighter note than Anne Sexton’s, Dorothy Parker, who was known for her sharp, scathing wit, was also plagued by depression and suicide attempts.  

One Perfect Rose is both humorous and sad. Perhaps the narrator is a materialistic woman, or perhaps she just expects more. What’s wrong with a rose? There’s nothing wrong with a rose, unless you’re expecting something else, which is what is more clearly stated in my poem below. Perhaps the narrator would like more commitment from her boyfriend, or a less of a traditional approach perhaps to their relationship.

In my poem, what the girl would like is a ring, not because it’s more expensive or fancy, although that too, but because it shows there’s a commitment. A rose is ephemeral. It’s pretty but it dies in a few days, and there’ll be nothing left. It’s not a symbol of permanence or stability like a ring, for example.

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Today I’ve also added a third challenge, Charli Mills at Carrot Ranch, weekly Flash Fiction Challenge based on a 99 word prompt. This weeks’ prompt is write about ‘a ring’, which is the subject of my poem today, although it’s called ‘One Perfect Rose’

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One Perfect Rose (After Dorothy Parker) by Luccia Gray

‘I found a perfect gift,’ he said.

He gave me a pretty card, which read,

‘This gift is almost as lovely as you.’

I still didn’t have a clue.

I wondered what he had in mind,

Although I knew my love was blind,

I was hoping for a ring at last,

My happiness, it was so vast!

I’d wear it on my finger proudly.

I extended my hand slowly,

And he showed me one perfect rose.

I sighed and looked down to my toes.

‘Don’t you like the rose?’ he asked.

‘It’s not what I had in mind,’ I barked.

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