A Rosarian Soliloquy

By Robert B. Martin Jr.

To spray, or not to spray - that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in roses to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous insects
Or to take arms against a sea of pestilence,
And by opposing end them. To poison - to be-
No more; and by a poison to cause to end
The heartache and the thousand natural pests
That rose is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To kill - to poison.
To poison-perchance to pollute: ay, there's the rub!
For in that death of poison what future comes
As we shuffle on this mortal earth,
Must give us pause. There's  respect of nature
That ought be considered in present times.
For who would bear the scorn of the environmentalist,
Th' accusation of wrong by the politically correct,
The pangs of despis'd horticulture, the law's sanction,
The insolence of organic thought, and the spurns
That sap merit from a worthy task,
When the rosarian himself might make his peace
With bare and scraggly plants? Who would these critics bear,
To grunt and sweat under a heavy Atomist,
But that the dread of something greatly reproductive-
The undiscovered thrips, from whose pincers
No petallage returns - puzzles the will,
And makes us rather fear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Shall conscience make cowards of us all,
And cause the native sense of beauty
To be sicklied o'er with the pale cast of doubt,
And cause the enterprise of great roses
Without regard our resolution to be turned awry
And lose the name of action?