A Red, Red Rose

‘O, My Luve is like a red, red rose

That’s newly sprung in June:

O, My Luve is like the melodie

That’s sweetly played in tune.’ (1794)

The captivating first line of Robert (Rabbie) Burns’ poem is now officially in season!
The Rose, traditionally the red variety, still remains the lover’s most romantic tool and in June we’ll see them in full abundance, here in Britain. Parks and gardens, sunny walls and craggy corners all desire the beautiful rose flower and, where possible, it will be perfectly perfumed, fragrant and voluptuous. Every part of it, from the plump, tightly wrapped bud to the soft, silky petals, to the long slender stem – why there is nothing more naturally sensual and symbolic of love.

‘Pass me a ribboned rosebud from its bed

And lazily lie each velvet petal

To relish as a crown around her head.’

Kate Barnwell, 2014 

Exactly 220 years later, the heralded Rose is still being featured in Romantic poetry.  

If you find someone sitting in rosebeds or wandering the rose gardens, picturing and smelling each and every rose, they are most definitely a poet, and happy one too!


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