The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

I've Had Roses All My Life

By Margaret E. Baca © 1989

Issue: September, 1989

I was barefoot in the dusty road
In a flour-sack dress of blue,
Wild pine trees reached above me
Moaning softly from wind cue.

But my heart was light with laughter
And my cheeks shinned from a kiss
And my small hand held so tightly
The slender fingers of my sis.

I knew her kiss stayed with me;
I could feel it in my heart.
It even went along with me
At kindergarten's start,

For my teacher smiled so brightly
As she showed me to my place,
Saw through the sunburn nature put there
And said, "Roses kissed your face!"

Rose was willows dressed in blue jeans
From her brother handed down.
Her thick long hair she tossed aside
As she knelt to the ground

And tenderly she viewed my knee,
Sorely skinned mid my distress,
And she said she'd have to wash it
And she blessed it with a kiss.

The next day I could walk again
And she giggled at my thanks,
But I knew her kiss worked magic
As we danced on river banks.

Through the echoes of my memories
I've had roses all my days,
Felt that velvet touch of fragrance
In my sister's gentle ways.

Now I live far from her.
I've an emptiness inside
And I long to travel back to
When I tumbled down and cried

And a breath of God's own Springtime
Rescued me from out my woe
In the form of sweet Rosanna
Cherished sis of long ago.

I don't believe I really thanked her,
For now we're far apart,
For leaving, through my changing childhood,
Soft Rose-kisses in my heart.

I understand some people's sorrow
In this saddened world of strife,
But God expects much more of me,
I've had Roses all my life.