Dearest, forgive that with my clumsy touch
I broke and bruised your rose.
I hardly could suppose
It were a thing so fragile that my clutch
Could kill it, thus.
It stood so proudly up upon its stem,
I knew no thought of fear,
And coming very near
Fell, overbalanced, to your garment’s hem,
Tearing it down.
Now, stooping, I upgather, one by one,
The crimson petals, all
Outspread about my fall.
They hold their fragrance still, a blood-red cone
Of memory.
And with my words I carve a little jar
To keep their scented dust,
Which, opening, you must
Breathe to your soul, and, breathing, know me far
More grieved than you.

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