A single flow’r he sent me, since we met.
All tenderly his messenger he chose;
Deep-hearted, pure, with scented dew still wet-
One perfect rose.

I knew the language of the floweret;
“My fragile leaves,” it said, “his heart enclose.”
Love long has taken for his amulet
One perfect rose.

Why is it no one ever sent me yet
One perfect limousine, do you suppose?
Ah no, it’s always just my luck to get
One perfect rose.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Dorothy Parker's poem One Perfect Rose


  1. Keely says:

    I think that the rose stands for love, while the limousine stands for material. if i had to choose a theme for this poem it would be that while attraction between two lovers can wither and die fast like a rose, money never loses it’s allure.

  2. asraa says:

    to his lady

  3. oby M says:

    This poem i think is about love and optimism. ‘why is it no one ever sent me yet’ the yet is the hope that someday someone or her lover will. and the last two lines is the resignation to fate, ‘Ah no, its always just my luck to get’. so if you agree or otherwise reach me on my e-mail.

  4. ea says:

    If you ask me, this is not a poem about love vs. materialism. It’s about a fling vs. a long and solid, committed relationship.

  5. Anet Luna says:

    I`m realy from Puerto Rico but teh alternative dont appear in the country selection 🙁 its ok;)

    Well I need to do a oral presentation about a poem and a chose “One perfect rose” by Dorothy Parker. This poem has very verbal irony speccialy in the third stanza. When I see the title of the poem I think that the poem is about the love but, I was wrong about it. I started reading and I received more than one teaching. Unfortunable in the actuality I can identify couples that aren`t in love and are unit just for the money. That`s realey bad!!! We need to analize if the love should be accompained with materialism to be accepted or the love is more than that. For me the love is more essential;)

  6. karen says:

    I is unfortunate that a poem by Dorthy Parker would be kept from Public viewing by anyone. I rather imagine that this is the last thing she intended. Sad indeed.

  7. Robin Dash says:

    I think that Dorothy Parker is a very gifted writer. When you can catch anyone’s interest and enlighten them on the realization of a subject it’s phenomenal. This woman is truly gifted and by no means sarcastic. Sometimes love can be strange but that’s all the more to pay attention.

  8. Sarah says:

    this poem makes me think that people dont always stay with someone for love but for material things and I dont understands why I am in love with my boyfriend and cant imagine only being with him for money

  9. Zukiswa says:

    I think Dorothy Parker is one of the greteast wits of the 20th Century.Personally, I find One Perfect Rose a testament to the fragility of love and in that I find both the rose and the limousine as a form of symbolism. Although the rose is perfect and flawless, it withers and dies whereas a limousine would be more valuable and longer lasting and its giving would depict greater commitment(testament to the inconstant hearts of men perhaps?!?!).

  10. JIMLIM says:

    hi i am jimlim from thailand.i am a third year student. i am studying this poem for my literature course at mahidol international university here with MR Galon. i love this class so much. my comments towards this poem are differently from what i have read above. i feel that the first part was talking about how a guy feel before he gave a rose to his lady;deep hearted, pure, with scented dew wet, all beautiful and romantic feelings. the second one was talking about how the girl understand the language he sent, right? but then , in the third one, it says something like the feeling of dissapointing that why does her man sent her a limousine? somebody may thinks that limousine is valuable stuffs which girls wish for, but in my idea, i think that the girl must feel that oh YES!i understand how you man feel when you give me the fragile leaves and your heart were enclose with it ! awww.. so romantic! but well! just a rose, just feelings, but why dont you man send me a limousine which means to propose me to marry you?.(in western culture, to send a limousine may means to pick the bride up and go to a wedding) the girl may want a commitment! it ensure her that you really love her and want to be with her for the whole life. to give a rose, a guy can give it to whome he likes but to marry someone is just only one he LOVES! it means more thans just a rose! well… that’s from what i think though.
    ..if anyone of you got anything to discuss with me , then feel free to e mail me!world peace!
    be happy! smile:)slimjimbkk@yahoo.com

  11. camelia says:

    i found out about Dorothy parker from my teacher and wow!she is great!!I love her poems and I see you are too!One perfect rose talks about the power of today love and the materialism that exists even between 2 lovers!

  12. ben dover says:

    i like this poem it reminds me of how much i love my boyfriend we both go to a all boy school and i love him very much i admit it i ma gay but i ma proud to be.

  13. Berlynn says:

    I had to memorize this poem in 6th grade. Just recently we started a poetry porject in school, and I was brought back to the days of reading Parker’s poems. I really love what she has written… they’re all wonderful and somewhat punctual, but can be misleading. One person’s perspective is no better than anothers. I highly recommend reading “Star Light, Star Bright” also by Dorothy Parker. It’s a simply put poem, but says so much.

  14. Beth says:

    Dorothy Parker was one of the greatest writers of all times. Her sense of humor and activism was unheard of at that time. Imagine if she lived today…wow, would she have lots to say!!

  15. Kari says:

    I like this poem it’s kinda making fun of women who think they are in “love” and are really gullible with the fact that love is getting a rose….then once you get to the third stanza it hits you with real life and shows what she really wants!…money

  16. Heather says:

    Hey this poem is quite funny, I enjoyed the complete reversal of your expectations as she is dissapointed in the end, a very cute poem with the simple abab format

  17. Angel Rivera says:

    The Poem “One Perfect Rose” all what the guy went a perfect rose ,but she wanted more than a rose but a limousine. To me that sounds like a gold digger in for the money not the luv they have for each other but the money he has and will spend on her and the time with her.

  18. Eugene says:

    This is a great peom. It seems to be the same old sappy poem and than bam! It hits you with its humor.

  19. ollie says:

    i love this poem, i think the narator seems love struck…yet dissapointed, i love it!

  20. Michelle Nieman says:

    Very funny and beautiful. Very peculiar and different.

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