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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

The Three Roses

Walter Savage Landor (1775–1864)

WHEN the buds began to burst,

Long ago, with Rose the First,

I was walking; joyous then

Far above all other men,

Till before us up there stood

Britonferry’s oaken wood,

Whispering, ‘Happy as thou art,

Happiness and thou must part.’

Many summers have gone by

Since a Second Rose and I

(Rose from that same stem) have told

This and other tales of old.

She upon her wedding-day

Carried home my tenderest lay:

From her lap I now have heard

Gleeful, chirping, Rose the Third,

Not for her this hand of mine

Rhyme with nuptial wreath shall twine;

Cold and torpid it must lie,

Mute the tongue and closed the eye.