For four years we took pleasure
in the rose bush growing near the front porch
of the white painted house
planted next to the church
in northern Tasmania.
A dark and velvety red,
its perfume was as deep
and as beautiful as its colour.
We tended it with care,
and, though it had been planted
long before our residency,
we took much pride in it, and joy.
We thought of those
who had also experienced its blessing
in years long past, some of whom we knew;
and we enjoyed our connection of delight.
Some years later we walked past that house,
and, being that time of the year,
we paused to look down the driveway
to see if our rose was in bloom.
Yes, there it was,
covered in the small white flowers
of the all-conquering rootstock.
Every three years we read the story
of the true vine,
and of us branches
who have been grafted into the vine;
and I am reminded of the importance
of the pruning, the pain,
and the sap that is spilled
in the process of being made fruitful.
© Ken Rookes 2012