To me, seeing the last rose of summer clinging to a nearly bare bush, represents perseverance and a love for life. Also a desire to hold on for what the future may bring. When its petals finally fall to the ground are they marking the end or a new beginning?
I don’t recall when I first heard the song, “The Last Rose Of Summer,” but it was sometime during my childhood. The writer, Irish poet, Thomas Moore, wrote it in 1805 and he depicted the last rose of summer as being lonely. It was in 1807 that the song was published and soon after that both Beethoven and Mendelssohn composed music based on it. In 1847 it was featured in the opera “Martha.” It’s popularity wanes and then surprisingly returns, even this year in a TV series.
It’s a sad song for not only does the writer see the rose as lonely but believes its leaves should be scattered over the flower bed where lies the rest of its mates. A further look at life, and the writer wonders who would want to inhabit this bleak world alone?
I’ve heard a woman, whose beauty is fading with age, referred to as the last rose of summer. But a more positive look shows that although summer is gone, spring will arrive again.The rose won’t die, it’s alive. It is not like an artificial flower with no root, no fragrance and no value. It will awaken to greater growth and possibly more blooms and will cheer a person’s heart again with its renewed beauty.
So it is with a believer in Christ. His roots are healthy, reaching deep into the depths of God’s Word. He stands strong during life’s changes. He’s alive, and living, which results in spiritual growth as he winters through his time on earth. He perseveres knowing that eternity awaits when he will be with Him. The last rose of summer may be God’s symbol of what lies ahead for the believer, he, too, will be resurrected like the rose, but this time to live eternally.