Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
Of Flowers
By Maurice Francis Egan (1852–1924)
THERE were no roses till the first child died,
  No violets, nor balmy-breathed heart’s-ease,
  No heliotrope, nor buds so dear to bees,
The honey-hearted suckle, no gold-eyed
And lowly dandelion, nor, stretching wide,        5
  Clover and cowslip-cups, like rival seas,
  Meeting and parting, as the young spring breeze
Runs giddy races playing seek and hide:
For all flowers died when Eve left Paradise,
  And all the world was flowerless awhile,        10
    Until a little child was laid in earth;
Then from its grave grew violets for its eyes,
  And from its lips rose-petals for its smile,
    And so all flowers from that child’s death took birth.

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