By helpful fingers taught to twine
Around its trellis, grew
A delicate and dainty vine;
The bursting bud, its blossom sign,
Inlaid with honeyed-dew.
Developing by every art
To floriculture known,
From tares exempt, and kept apart,
Careful, as if in some fond heart
Its legume germs were sown.
So thriving, not for me alone
Its beauty and perfume–
Ah, no, to rich perfection grown
By flower mission loved and known
In many a darkened room.
And once in strange and solemn place,
Mid weeping uncontrolled,
Upon the crushed and snowy lace
I saw them scattered ’round a face
All pallid, still, and cold.
Oh, some may choose, as gaudy shows,
Those saucy sprigs of pride
The peony, the red, red rose;
But give to me the flower that grows
Petite and pansy-eyed.
Thus, meditation on Sweet Peas
Impels the ardent thought,
Would maidens all were more like these,
With modesty–that true heartsease–
Tying the lover’s knot.