ROSES AND LILIES

Roses and Lilies, both are sweet;
   Lily and Rose, both are fair;
But which to gather for mine alway,
   Which to gather, and keep, and wear,
That is the queston that bothers me,
For I cannot wear them both, you see.

Rose is the brightest and blithest of girls:
   I could lay my heart at her tiny feet,
And gaze forever in those dark eyes,
   And kiss forever those lips so sweet.
And holding her soft, white, clinging hand,
Dreamily float into Eden land.

And Lily--Lily, my ocean pearl,
   So sweetly tender, so moonlight fair,
I could float to heaven upon her smile,
   And kiss forever her silken hair,
That droppeth down, like a golden veil
Over her cheek, and brow---snow pale.

Lilies and Roses--both are fair:
   Rose, or Lily, which shall it be?
I love them both with my heart of hearts,
   But I cannot wed them both, you see.
Dark-eyed Rose, my winsome girl--
   Moon-faced Lily, my ocean pearl.

1870

Shells by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Milwaukee: Hauser & Storey, 1873.


Back to Poem Index