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The bloom is off the rose

Posted by Bob on February 23, 2006

In Reply to: The bloom is off the rose posted by ESC on February 23, 2006

: : : What does the phrase "the bloom is off the rose mean. What is its origin?

: : When the bloom is off the rose, it means, figuratively, that whatever you are talking about has lost its first freshness, it's former beauty and allure. Literally, it means, of course, that the blooms of the rose have withered and dropped. Similar phrases were used in the 18th century, but I don't know about that particular phrase, which is now quite common. It connotes a degree of disenchantment, and when was that not common?

: To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time
: Robert Herrick

: Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
: Old Time is still a-flying:
: And this same flower that smiles to-day
: To-morrow will be dying.

: The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun,
: The higher he's a-getting,
: The sooner will his race be run,
: And nearer he's to setting.

: That age is best which is the first,
: When youth and blood are warmer;
: But being spent, the worse, and worst
: Times still succeed the former.

: Then be not coy, but use your time,
: And while ye may, go marry:
: For having lost but once your prime,
: You may for ever tarry.

Well ok. But the sentimental Irish side of me says:

Believe me if all those
Endearing young charms
Which I gaze on so fondly today
Were to change by tomorrow
And fleet in my arms,
Like fairy gifts fading away
Though would'st still be adored
As this moment thou art
Let thy loveliness fade as it will
And around the dear ruin
Each wish of my heart
Would entwine itself
Verdantly still.

It is not while beauty
And youth are thine own
And thy cheeks
Unprofaned by a tear
That the ferver and faith
Of a soul can be known
To which time will but
Make thee more dear
No the heart that has truly loved
Never forgets
But as truly loves
On to the close
As the sunflower turns
On her god when he sets
The same look which
She'd turned when he rose.