To the rose, so wondrous fair,
If my Celia I compare
Scarce the flowrets glowing hue
Paints the blush that spreads her face.
Scarce in its lovely forms we view
And emblem of her perfect grace,
Scarce the fragrance of its smell
Can her balmy breath excel.
But ah what pity every rose
Within should lurking thorns enclose
That while its glowing hue we praise
And gently to our bosom press
The lovely flower — with speed arrays
That fostering bosom to distress
But say in Celia’s polished mind
A lurking thorn where shall we find.
Her yes, too mild to give a wound,
Shed beams of love on all around
Her heart in every virtue blest
Modest, affectionate and kind
Would never wound another’s breast,
But strive to heal the wounded mind.
But since a thorn I’m doomed to find
Be to thy tongue that place assigned.
Nor gentle Celia, let your voice
Too hastily condemn my choice
For when, on all your friends around
Of playful wit you shower the darts
Unknowning, oft, you give a wound
And pierce with sharpest thorn their hearts
Yet pleasing e’en those wounds must prove
From one whom all so dearly love.