The Rose
For Carroll and Garold Wilson
 
 

I left it all, and I went away
To find something I never had -
A place of my own where I wouldn’t be
A burden on Mother and Dad.
 

I worked real hard and the good Lord blessed
My grateful heart through and through;
But I never forgot the old home place
And the porch where the roses grew.
 

In the summer the field was lush and green
And the garden was plentiful too,
But the winters were hard when the snow piled high
And we kids had to get to school.
 

We hardly could wait till the mockingbird sang
And the wild flowers pushed up their heads;
Till the falling rain by the side of the porch -
Woke the rose from it’s sleeping bed.
 

In the living room we had a big old barrel -
That made us a dandy fire.
On cold nights we sat with the popcorn pan
Playin’ banjo and fiddle and lyre.
 

Oh, we laughed a lot, but we cried some too -
It was hard times in thirty two...
But we made our way and developed a faith
That was certain to see us through.
 

Every season that came we watched that rose,
Blessed by it’s fragrance and grace -
All of us knew that deep in our hearts
The rose had a special place.
 

For a rose can remind you of love so deep -
Even pressed the scent lingers on -
And from little on we were taught to compare
Our lives to the Rose of Sharon.
 

We all grew up - in spite of the times -
Made our way in a world of fast pace.
As the years rolled by I decided I’d go
Back to the old home place.
 

....The house now was gone...the barn and rail fence....
No wonder - they never were much -
But my heart skipped a beat - I couldn’t believe!
I had to walk over and touch!
 

For the rose still survived and had grown through the years;
Tiny rose that had so pleasured us,
Was a beautiful bush as big as the house -
Still living - still green and lush.
 

Then the memories came - echoes of time -
The floor where your penny fell through;
The old water well, the bucket and cup...
Forty acres by hand and mule.
 

The eggs Mom would set and the way she would fret
‘Bout the holes in our shoes and clothes;
And the table filled with her homemade skills -
And a vase with blooms from the rose.
 

The rose! - oh, the rose! so magnificent now!
It’s fragrance and beauty so rare!
I knew that the Lord had nurtured that rose
With His blessings and personal care.
 

To remind us one day when we’d all gone our ways
That each still holds in his heart
Mem’ries of a place where happiness dwelt
And helped us all make a right start.
 

I gathered a bloom and a good strong shoot
From the bush and I took it home...
I planted the shoot...by the side of my porch..
For the sake of mem’ry alone.
 

Joan Clifton Costner