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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Arthur Joseph Munby b. 1828

Flos Florum

ONE only rose our village maiden wore;

Upon her breast she wore it, in that part

Where many a throbbing pulse doth heave and start

At the mere thought of Love and his sweet lore.

No polish’d gems hath she, no moulded ore,

Nor any other masterpiece of art:

She hath but Nature’s masterpiece, her heart;

And that show’d ruddy as the rose she bore

Because that he, who sought for steadfastness

Vainly in other maids, had found it bare

Under the eyelids of this maiden fair,

Under the folds of her most simple dress.

She let him find it; for she lov’d him, too,

As he lov’d her: and all this tale is true.