Never cared much for roses- and I think it’s because it bothered me how adored they were, how symbolic of love and romance and other supposed ‘good’ things, how Shakespeare threw a captivating comparison about them into Romeo’s mouth and now high school English students are still quoting him in their essays to this day. How their petals are traditionally tossed in the air as newlyweds exit the chapel- how extravagant, how unnecessary!- how unkind to the poor soul and their aching back while picking them up when all the festivities are over.

I guess I’ve always felt their adoration to be entirely.. undeserved. They just seemed to exist, propped on their bushes, protected by their thorns, sending out an alluring fragrance, drawing in western-culture-brainwashed humans who swallow every spoonful they’re fed about what’s beautiful and what’s admirable without ever thinking for themselves. But me? Nope. I’d take a brain and hard work over beauty any day.

But this week my mind changed. Roses are blooming all over my village- but in ways I hadn’t seen until now.

They’re climbing up walls- high walls, difficult walls. They’re growing in harsh and continual sunlight, in spots where others would simply wilt from sunburn. They’re working for their beauty, their admiration, their adoration, their place in daily conversation- their place in long-winded social media captions. They’re deeper in colour than any I’ve yet seen, they’re perfectly decorative- yet at the same time seamlessly integrated into the village aesthetic. A true feat, no less. They’re actually.. nice! Beautiful!, even. And they’ve earned such a description. And so thus, I declare, today is the day I’ve officially decided: I like roses.