Monday, February 27, 2017

The Perfect Rose


By Michael R. Ritt

Today I saw a perfect rose
Without a single flaw.
Its petals glistened in the dew
Like ice before a thaw.
Its color was the deepest red
That I had ever seen.
I saw it growing in the rocks
So lonely and serene.
Its fragrance filled the evening air
And floated on the breeze.
It wafted ever heavenward
Ascending through the trees.
I asked the gardener how he came
To grow a perfect rose,
What fertilizers did he use,
And in what ratios?
He looked at me with knowing eyes
And gave a little smile.
“Look closer at the rose, my son,
And stare at it a while.”
Then looking closer I beheld
What I’d not seen before.
It wasn’t perfect after all
But little scars it bore.
In other places it looked crushed
And bleeding through the bruise.
And all at once I knew that its
Perfection was a ruse.
He said, “The bleeding that you see
Upon the rose’s bloom,
Was caused by growing through the rocks,
But makes its sweet perfume.
It is the trials that we bear,
The rocky soil of life,
The pain and struggles we endure,
The heartache and the strife.
The people that would cause us pain,
The insults that we face,
That we forgive with tenderness,
With mercy and with grace.
The gardener uses all of these
To fertilize his rose.
And so with people, as with flowers,
That’s how perfection grows.”