Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE ROSE AND THORN, by PAUL HAMILTON HAYNE

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE ROSE AND THORN, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: She's loveliest of the festal throng
Last Line: The thorn has pierced her heart.
Subject(s): Flowers; Roses; Thorns

SHE's loveliest of the festal throng
In delicate form and Grecian face, --
A beautiful, incarnate song,
A marvel of harmonious grace,
And yet I know the truth I speak:
From those gay groups she stands apart,
A rose upon her tender cheek,
A thorn within her heart.

Though bright her eyes' bewildering gleams,
Fair tremulous lips and shining hair,
A something born of mournful dreams
Breathes round her sad enchanted air;
No blithesome thoughts at hid and seek
From out her dimples smiling start;
If still the rose be on her cheek,
A thorn is in her heart.

Young lover, tossed 'twixt hope and fear,
Your whispered vow and yearning eyes
Yon marble Clytie pillared near
Could move as soon to soft replies;
Or, if she thrill at words you speak,
Love's memory prompts the sudden start;
The rose has paled upon her cheek,
The thorn has pierced her heart.

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