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The Flower Girl - a Poem

John has been writing poetry since his school days. He was awarded "Poet of the Year 2014" Hubby Awards and has had two poems become songs.

A sketch I drew called “The Flower Girl”

A sketch I drew called “The Flower Girl”

The Flower Girl

The climbing rose vine bloomed with flowers

Against the marble wall,

Poppies also raised their heads,

Standing proud and tall.

Carefully she braved the thorns,

Picking the flowers with skill,

Then placed them in her basket

Until it was quite full.

The flower girl went to every fair,

Attending without fail.

People bought the lovely roses

She always had for sale.

But, no one seemed to know her,

Her story or her name.

She'd smile and say a "thank you,"

Then she'd go quiet again.

So, everyone just called her Rose

And left her to her flowers.

They rarely delved into her past

As she sat there passing hours.

Once the flower girl was engaged

To a handsome man named Ned.

He bought a rose bush for his love

And they had planned to wed.

But suddenly, the war broke out,

And brave men called to fight.

Ned responded to the need.

The wedding must now wait.

"Remember me with every bloom,"

He kissed her on the chin,

As sadly he went off to war,

Ne'er to return again.

Her tears flowed at the awful news,

Ned was never coming home.

She had no other family,

So faced her grief alone.

All she had for comfort

In her state of sad repose

Was that parting gift from Ned,

The little climbing rose.

So, every day she watered it

And pruned and shaped the stem,

Hoping for the day it bloomed.

In flowers, she'd see her Ned.

Her dedication soon paid off,

The first rose bud appeared.

It looked to her, just like sweet Ned,

And she wiped away a tear.

More buds quickly turned to flowers,

And roses climbed the wall.

She picked as many as she could,

But couldn't use them all.

She'd had little money to survive

And get by day to day,

But with his thoughtful parting gift,

Her Love had found a way.

So, to the fairs and markets

With her roses, she would go,

But, the mystery flower girl's story,

No one would ever know.

© 2019 John Hansen


John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 13, 2019:

Awww.thank you

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 13, 2019:

Lol...you have a great knack for it.

You are a wonderful writer.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 13, 2019:

Hi Brenda. I am pleased you enjoyed this love story. I need to write a tear-jerker from time to time. To show off my sensitive side lol.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 13, 2019:

Loved this one! Such a sad story of how she finally found her love only to lose him in the war.

But then alas, the rose bush. It forever remains for her even when no one elser will never know her story.

Great read.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 02, 2019:

Thank you, Lawrence. I am glad I was able to convey that emotion.

Lawrence Hebb from Hamilton, New Zealand on May 02, 2019:


What a wonderful story within the poem!

One that strikes the heart.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on April 07, 2019:

Good to receive your comment as always Genna. I try my best at art but I need to practice more. I am glad you enjoyed the poem and thanks for sharing that short quote. I am not famous liar with it. Have a great week.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on April 07, 2019:

Hi John...

I had no idea you are an accomplished artist...that sketch is lovely, and complements your poem, perfectly.

"Remember me with every bloom"... my favorite line.

"Full many a flower is born to blush unseen..." I can't remember who wrote this, but the words remind me of your bittersweet, beautiful poem.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on April 04, 2019:

That is great, Shauna. I would love to read that interview and see your brother's work. I am sure he sees color in a deeper and more subtle way than most of us. It some times takes some kind of "disability" to discover a true gift.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on April 04, 2019:

John, this touches my heart. My brother is color blind and is a phenomenal artist. He majored in the fine arts in college. He's amazing. I'm working on posting an interview with him and featuring some of his work. You'd never know he's color blind. I know how he "sees" color. He sees hues. However, once you see his work you'll realize he sees the "soul" of color. He "sees" much more than we do.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on April 04, 2019:

Shauna, Drawing used to be my major hobby and interest as a child and even young adult, before I started to write. I haven’t done a lot of sketching in recent years though I was utilised a lot when I worked at a University doing displays and fliers for open days and special events etc. A few years ago I did write an article here “How to Draw Using the Right Side of Your Brain.” Thanks for reading the poem and for your great comment.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on April 04, 2019:

John, this poem is breathtakingly bittersweet. What makes it even more special is your awesome sketch. I had no idea you're an artist! I'd love to see more of your work.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on April 02, 2019:

Thank you so much, Kamkar..

Kamkar sanjukta on April 02, 2019:

A heart touching story with beautiful rhythm and illustration.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on April 02, 2019:

Thank you so much for the kind comment Liz, I am so glad you enjoyed this poem.

Liz Westwood from UK on April 02, 2019:

This is a lovely poem, etched with a fine balance of beauty and sadness. You are a gifted poet.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

I thank you Bill, both for your visit to my poem and your comment. So glad you appreciate my artwork as well as my writing. I admit that your own recent hub incorporating your sketches was an inspiration for me. I haven’t done any sketching for over a year but you have given me a reminder I should devote more time to that and utilise them to accompany my writing. Thank you my friend.

Bill Russo from Cape Cod on March 31, 2019:

The poem took us on a bittersweet stroll. I liked it, but I confess that I like the drawing even more. John, your own drawn art is a lovely and worthy companion to your word art.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Haha Linda, don’t give me a swelled head now. We, all have our various talents, you are a great cook, writer, and many other things I am sure. I am glad you found the story touching, and I am sure there was Love passed on to others who bought her roses.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Hi Ruby, thank you for reading and enjoying this poem. I don’t go to watch a lot of movies at the Cinema, but The Rose was one I did. Bette Midler’s Performance was incredible and who could not be touched by the song ‘The Rose?’ Cheers.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Thank you Venkatachari. I am glad you found this story/poem touching and emotional. Your comment is much appreciated.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

It is always a pleasure to receive your comments Md. thanks for the kind words regarding the poem and drawing. I certainly hope you get a rose from a flower girl too.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on March 31, 2019:

A gifted storyteller, poet, and now an artist as well. Thank you for such a sweet, touching story of love found, love lost, and love remembered. Perhaps the love she felt for Ned was passed along in some small way to those who purchased and bought the roses for others.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on March 31, 2019:

I love this poetry. It touched my heart, and the video. Bette has always been one of my favorites. I remember well the evening I went to see' The Rose ' I also loved the sketch of the flower girl. I think you are multi talented John. Cheers my friend

Venkatachari M from Hyderabad, India on March 31, 2019:

Very beautiful story of the flower girl. It was so emotional and touching to the heart.

Velcro on March 31, 2019:

A heart wrenching tale whose essence was as beautiful as a rose ....and your beautiful artistic illustration just adds to it . Thank you for sharing ,John !! I hope that I too get a rose from the "flower girl " :)

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Oh, Mike. Thank you for that. I could always draw ok and originally wanted to be a commercial artist (before digital) long before I tried my hand at writing.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Thank you Mel, so glad you found this mysterious. Wow, fancy comparing this to Poe’s Annabelle Lee. That is a real classic.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

I was her invisible friend lol, Elija. I am glad I managed to keep you in suspense for awhile and satisfied in the end. Thanks for reading

mckbirdbks from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on March 31, 2019:

Hi John - I knew you where a poet and storyteller. Now you have added artist to the list of talents. Nice story, sad but full.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

The name of the song rings a bell, Bill, but I just can’t place it. So glad you enjoyed this.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Val, the very thought of war irks me as a totally senseless waste of life and money...far too many flower girls left behind. Thank you for such an encouraging comment about my poetry. Don’t worry for not commenting on them all. None of us have the time to read and comment on everything. I appreciate the ones you are able to read. Thanks again my friend.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Thank you so much Verlie. I agree that HubPages is a great venue for this type of thing.

Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on March 31, 2019:

Very poignant and mysterious. I like the way you veil the message without really veiling it, and how it builds to the knockout punch in the final stanza, like Poe's Annabel Lee.

Elijah A Alexander Jr from Washington DC on March 31, 2019:

How, my friend John, did you come to know her story, were you her in a past incarnation and remembered it to write about? LOL

So well done it kept me in suspense until Ned went to war where the suspense changed to be solved only realizing that was the only way she sustained herself. That made it a pleasurable read, thanks.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 31, 2019:

There was a song in the 60's titled "Flower Girl," or that phrase was in the song. I was humming it as I read this...loved it!

Val Karas from Canada on March 31, 2019:

John---What a great poem, my friend!! Without reading all these comments, I know, no matter how I say my praise, it will be stealing from them, because everybody simply has to love your talent's poetic expressions.

This one evoked in me my old grudge against the stupidity of all wars--with an untold number of flower girls having to bury their love.

And then, of course, that bitter feeling got watered down by the admiration for the way you portrayed her and her modest existence.

Well, I can't remember seeing your poem that didn't leave a deep impression on me ---but I can easily remember my laziness to let you know about it with a comment.

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on March 31, 2019:

Beautiful story/poem John. I love your artwork too, so much talent displayed on this page. Hub Pages is the perfect venue to share these gems.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Thank you very much for the lovely comment, Pamela. With the number of couples separated because of war, these type of stories become more common. Much appreciated.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on March 31, 2019:

I really like this lovely poem about the flower girl. It is sad, but it is such a lovely story. Something similar to the story of this happens sometimes when people are in love and the man or the even a woman these days goes to fight for their country. You are a talented poet John.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Yes, Li-Jen, I guess this is like one of those classic tales. Glad you enjoyed the poem and drawing. Thank you.

Li-Jen Hew on March 31, 2019:

Hey Jodah, the poem sounds like a classic tale. Enjoyed the story. The sketch is wonderful.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Sean, your wonderful and caring comments always make me glad to be a writer. I am continually humbled by your words. Bette Midler's "The Rose" has always been one of those songs that touched me deeply at the time and will always remain very special to me. Thank you as always.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Thank you for reading this Chitrangada, and for your heartfelt comment. Yes, we should all strive to leave some legacy for which we will be remembered. Much appreciated.

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on March 31, 2019:

The seed of Love always springs and its flowers connecting the lovers over space and time, because it's a seed we brought with us from our Heavenly Home. Amazing poem, my brother! Thank you for the tears in my eyes! Thank you for the Beauty you gave to my Sunday!

Grateful for the pieces of your Noble Heart you share with us!


PS: Amazing Bette Midler in a beloved song from my youth!

"When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long

And you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong

Just remember in the winter, far beneath the bitter snows

Lies the seed, that with the sun's love in the spring becomes the rose."

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on March 31, 2019:

What a beautiful and heart touching poem!

I liked the rhyme and the important life’s message. We are all here for a while only. How important it is to leave something, for which we will be remembered; something which will help your dear ones.

Loved your ‘Flower girl.’ Such a lively composition!

Thanks for sharing!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Yes, Nithya, Ned was kept alive through the roses. Thank you for your generous comment.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on March 31, 2019:

Beautifully expressed. The gift kept her alive even after he passed away, fighting for his country. She could see Ned in all the flowers that bloomed.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on March 31, 2019:

Hi Lora, thank you very much for your insightful and generous comment. None of us is immune to the loss of a loved one at some stage during our lives. We need to grieve, however, life goes on and we have to move on with it. We inevitably learn new ways of coping.

Lora Hollings on March 31, 2019:

A lovely poem, John. I really liked your message of love and how it can continue to impact our lives even after our loved one is gone. Our lives continue to be touched and changed in ways that we may have never imagined! Love, often times, provides the solution to so many of life's challenges and hardships. You did an excellent job of getting this profound message across in your verse.

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