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Sweet Rose of Virtue: William Dunbar Translation
Sweet Rose of Virtue by William Dunbar (c. 1460-1530) loose translation/modernization/interpretation by Michael R. Burch after William Dunbar Sweet rose of virtue and of gentleness, delightful lily of youthful wantonness, richest in bounty and in beauty clear and in every virtue that is held most dear-- except only that you are merciless. Into your garden, today, I followed you; there I saw flowers of freshest hue, both white and red, delightful to see, and wholesome herbs, waving resplendently-- yet everywhere, no odor but rue. I fear that March with his last arctic blast has slain my fair rose of pallid and gentle cast, whose piteous death does my heart such pain that, if I could, I would compose her roots again-- so comforting her bowering leaves have been. "Sweet Rose of Virtue" has been described as a "lovely, elegant poem in the amour courtois tradition" or courtly love tradition. According to Tom Scott, author of "Dunbar: A Critical Exposition of the Poems," this poem is "Dunbar's most perfect lyric, and one of the supreme lyrics in Scots and English." William Dunbar [c. 1460-1530] has been called the Poet Laureate of the court of King James IV of Scotland. Keywords/Tags: Scot, Scots, Scottish, Translation, Modernization, Interpretation, Makar, Makaris, Sonnet, Iambic Pentameter, Quintains, Courtly Tradition, Carpe Diem, Garden, Rose, Lily, Herbs, Rue, Virtue, Bower, Bowers, Bowering PRINCESS DIANA POEMS, including a version of "Sweet Rose of Virtue" slightly altered in tribute Fairest Diana by Michael R. Burch Fairest Diana, princess of dreams, born to be loved and yet distant and lone, why did you linger--so solemn, so lovely-- an orchid ablaze in a crevice of stone? Was not your heart meant for tenderest passions? Surely your lips--for wild kisses, not vows! Why then did you languish, though lustrous, becoming a pearl of enchantment cast before sows? Fairest Diana, as fragile as lilac, as willful as rainfall, as true as the rose; how did a stanza of silver-bright verse come to be bound in a book of dull prose? Published by Tucumcari Literary Journal and Night Roses Will There Be Starlight for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch Will there be starlight tonight while she gathers damask and lilac and sweet-scented heathers? And will she find flowers, or will she find thorns guarding the petals of roses unborn? Will there be starlight tonight while she gathers seashells and mussels and albatross feathers? And will she find treasure or will she find pain at the end of this rainbow of moonlight on rain? She Was Very Strange, and Beautiful for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch She was very strange, and beautiful, like a violet mist enshrouding hills before night falls when the hoot owl calls and the cricket trills and the envapored moon hangs low and full. She was very strange, in a pleasant way, as the hummingbird flies madly still, so I drank my fill of her every word. What she knew of love, she demurred to say. She was meant to leave, as the wind must blow, as the sun must set, as the rain must fall. Though she gave her all, we had nothing left... yet we smiled, bereft, in her receding glow. The Peripheries of Love for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch Through waning afternoons we glide the watery peripheries of love. A silence, a quietude falls. Above us--the sagging pavilions of clouds. Below us--rough pebbles slowly worn smooth grate in the gentle turbulence of yesterday’s forgotten rains. Later, the moon like a virgin lifts her stricken white face and the waters rise toward some unfathomable shore. We sway gently in the wake of what stirs beneath us, yet leaves us unmoved... curiously motionless, as though twilight might blur the effects of proximity and distance, as though love might be near-- as near as a single cupped tear of resilient dew or a long-awaited face. The Aery Faery Princess for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch There once was a princess lighter than fluff made of such gossamer stuff-- the down of a thistle, butterflies’ wings, the faintest high note the hummingbird sings, moonbeams on garlands, stands of bright hair... I think she’s just you when you’re floating on air. I Pray Tonight for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch I pray tonight the starry light might surround you. I pray by day that, come what may, no dark thing confound you. I pray ere tomorrow an end to your sorrow. May angels' white chorales sing, and astound you. Sweet Rose of Virtue, for Princess Diana by William Dunbar 1460-1525 loose translation by Michael R. Burch Sweet rose of virtue and of gentleness, delightful lily of youthful wantonness, richest in bounty and in beauty clear and in every virtue that is held most dear-- except only that death is merciless. Into your garden, today, I followed you; there I saw flowers of freshest hue, both white and red, delightful to see, and wholesome herbs, waving resplendently-- yet everywhere, no odor but rue. I fear that March with his last arctic blast has slain our fair rose of pallid and gentle cast, whose piteous death does my heart such pain that, if I could, I would compose her roots again-- so comforting her bowering leaves have been. Ah! Sunflower for Princess Diana by Michael R. Burch after William Blake O little yellow flower like a star ... how beautiful, how wonderful you are! Keywords/Tags: Princess, England, English, royalty, royal, royals, noble, nobility, beauty, beautiful, grace, class, crown, sonnet, sonnets
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