The Death of a Rose

Image by Mabel Amber from Pixabay

“Tell me, is the rose naked or is that her only dress?”- Pablo Neruda, The Book of Questions

As dying fragrant petals drift to blackened terra, 
earthworms seeking fresh air, drink in their sweet perfume
and taste of life’s fading essence in dusty pink hues
as they feast like drunken butterflies on sweet rose wine

Some wandering petals take wing, flying through the air 
bobbing and floating on a cool spring breeze
tempting flocks of doves with ambrosial confetti
a dance of dying colors, before they fall~ forgotten

Back to cold earth

©2021 Linda Lee Lyberg

dVerse Poetics: A Conversation Sarah is hosting today and asks us to write a response to a poem we have read in the last year that spoke to us. I chose a poem from Pablo Neruda’s The Book of Questions (link above in quote). Here is poem III:

Tell me, is the rose naked
or is that her only dress?

Why do trees conceal
the splendor of their roots?

Who hears the regrets
of the thieving automobile?

Is there anything in the world sadder
than a train standing in the rain?

Linda Lee Lyberg is a wife, mother, artist, published poet and author. She resides in Mesa, AZ with her husband Pete (aka The Big Viking) of 24 years, and her dog, Ricky Bobby. Linda writes various forms of poetry, as well as short stories. You can read more of her works at:
and purchase anthologies containing her work here: Amazon Author Page

30 Comments on “The Death of a Rose

  1. Love Neruda’s quotation and love your post! I like the detail of describing the petals bobbing and then likening them to ambrosial confetti. I enjoyed this very much!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is absolutely gorgeous, gorgeous work Linda! 💝💝 Especially love the image; “tempting flocks of doves with ambrosial confetti.” 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You had me at,” a dance of dying colors, before they fall, forgotten..” Neruda’s “Conversation” is all inquiry, and yours is poetic explication, the flesh on Neruda’s ghostly bones. Very nice.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I like how fleeting time can be yet be magical: tempting flocks of doves with ambrosial confetti.

    Your Neruda inspired poem is a lovely response Linda.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. A beautiful response to Neruda’s poem. I especially like the pause before you deliver the final line, giving the rose petal time to fall.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Neruda seems to be a poet we can all have a conversation with; his poems have been used as prompts by most of us at dVerse. I love how you have taken his rose and grown her into a newer, plumper variety, Linda, despite your rose losing its dying petals. I’m glad the earthworms enjoyed their sweet perfume and rose wine. And what a phrase, ‘a dance of dying colors, before they fall’!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m pleased you chose to concentrate on the rose and describe the dance of those last petals. The last couplet of the Neruda poem conjures up an image for me full of horror that your poem escapes.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This was an excellent piece and an engaging read Linda — well written. Happy & Healthy New Year to you and yours. Here’s to writing wonderful poetry in 2021.

    Liked by 1 person

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