"The Rose" as written by and Gordon Mills....
Some say love, it is a river, that drowns the tender reed
Some say love, it is a razor, that leaves your soul to bleed
Some say love, it is a hunger, an endless aching need
I say love, it is a flower, and you, its only seed

Its the heart afraid of breaking, that never learns to dance
Its the dream afraid of waking, that never takes the chance
Its the one who won't be taking, who cannot seem to give
And the soul afraid of dying, that never learns to live

When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long
And you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong
Just remember in the winter, far beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed, that with the sun's love in the spring becomes the rose

Lyrics submitted by kevin

"The Rose" as written by Gordon Mills

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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The Rose song meanings
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  • +4
    General CommentThis is one of my favorite songs. It really isn't just the cheesy, over-the-top 80's love tune that so many make it out to be.

    In fact, I really don't think it is a song that is necessarily about ROMANTIC love. Rather, it is a poem on how one should approach and live life. Only YOU can determine whether or not there will be love in your life. This is what she means when she says "I say love, it is a flower... and you... it's only seed." Only YOU have the power to fill your world with love. TRUE love, not romantic love. Romantic love, as beautiful as it is, is too often an illusion of Hollywood. True love is lasts forever, regardless if you receive any back.

    Furthermore, it teaches us that just because there is suffering doesn't mean we should run from it. In fact, the five or six most powerful lines in the song are dedicated to making this point. It is suffering, hardship, and not getting what we want that ultimately teaches us how valuable life is and how deeply it should be appreciated. Instead of running from these things under the naive illusion that life is supposed to be perfect, it is better to accept them (not in a defeatist way, of course).

    Anyway, thats my two cents.
    TheDesertFoxon February 02, 2009   Link
  • +4
    MemoryMy mom adored this song like no other. When she died of cancer it was one of the obvious songs we played at her funeral.

    A few months later I met an amazing girl, and now a year later I feel like I've come to understand the lyrics in a way I never did before.

    She had a heart afraid of breaking and it killed our relationship. She preemptively took her heart and commitment out of the relationship, even though she loved me. She did realize she was doing so but rationalized it by saying that she didn't deserve love. I tried to convince her she deserved mine and I deserved her heart to open up to me but she couldn't commit to it.

    In her defense the next line very much applies to me. I've had plenty of dreams but never dared to make any of them reality. I'm to afraid of waking to take the chance to make my life into what I hope it to be. Something she had less isuee. with.

    I guess ultimately I feel encouraged by Midler's words that some winter another seed will grow into the rose of love, for both me and my former beloved. Hopefully one day my mother can look down on me and see that I grew up happy and loved by someone willing to dance with me.
    Merinoon July 18, 2015   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThe Rose was written by Amanda McBroom. She was talked into submitting it for use in the movie as the producers were looking for a song to use. Initially, they turned it down. The music director who at one time worked with Janis Joplin tried to get the producers to use the song, but ended up sending it to Bette Midler who made the producers use the song in the movie. You can read the story on Amanda's web site at amcbroom.com. I am not her, have never met her, but heard her sing on a Mobile Fidelity recording back in the 70's. called 'Growing Up in Hollywood Town.' She has a beautiful voice in her own right.
    amlogic532on January 02, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General Comment"just remember in the winter
    far beneath the bitter snows
    lies the seed that with the sun's love
    in the spring becomes the rose"

    That's my favorite part of the song. It's like saying despite how cold someone might seem to be on the exterior, inside there's a beautiful soul yearning to be loved just like anyone else.

    This song has never failed to bring tears to my eyes. :)
    JemmaDilemmaon July 23, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSome look at this song as a pop song, but if you look at it as poetry, it's really beautiful and it has a good point.
    isitHIP2besquareon April 13, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti love this song because it means so much to me one of my friends sung it in a beauty pageant. She died about a year later and everytiime i hear this song it reminds me of her. It doesnt make me sad it just makes me remember her and what a talented musician and great person she was.
    Rixie17on December 12, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment Bette Midler expresses sorrow and mourn but also hope and triumph in “The Rose”. With traces of Nashville Sound and the flow of Patsy Cline with the smooth vocals and string ensembles. Midler hits notes that send shivers to the spine as she touches on the truths of love. Midler sings the depressing lyrics in an elegiac tone at the beginning of the number. Many metaphors are used to describe how love is compared to hurtful things(3-6). The second phrase is a transition from an elegiac tone to a hortatory tone. The third phrase has encouraging lyrics which are sung louder and with more exciting instrumentals. Bette encourages listeners to plant the seed of love “far beneath the bitter snow” and “in the spring becomes the rose”. Rose is being used as an allusion because in the song, growing a rose is like taking a chance to love. The beautiful, romantic rose is a symbol of a relationship being nurtured to success. Bette Midler uses personification to make taking chances for love more personal. It’s the heart afraid of breaking that never learns to dance--/ It’s the dream afraid of waking that never takes the chance (9-12). Midler uses other poetic devices such as hyperbole to exagerate why people are afraid to love. Some say love, it is a razor that leaves your soul to bleed (4-5). “The Rose” is a song focused on modernism. This song proves modern because the listeners are interested in depth and exploring meaning in the deep lyrics of the song. Seeking the underlying of the universe expressed in language is like picking apart this song to its core to decipher the real message. One aspect of postmodernism in this song is relevant as the lyrics seem to point to frustration because the world doesn’t live up to our expectations. This is shown in the second phrase. It’s the one who won’t be taken, who cannot seem to give (12-13). I think this song is about taking the chance to find love. Bette Midler suggests that if we haven’t tried love, we never learn to live. This song encourages listeners to plant a seed of love and nurture the relationship no matter what experiences have broken our heart in the past. Even if our soul is bleeding from the last attempt, a beautiful rose will grow when the love is meant to be.
    danieb08on October 20, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis touching ballad, written by songwriter Amanda McBroom, was the title track to the 1979 film ``The Rose,'' starring Bette Midler. The film was based loosely on the life of Janis Joplin, a talented singer / songwriter who died of a heroin overdose in 1971 at the age of 27.

    One day in 1977, McBroom was driving down the freeway when Leo Sayer's hit single ``Magdalena'' came on the radio. A line in the song caught her attention: ``Your love is like a razor; my heart is just a scar.'' She loved the lyric, but didn't agree with the simile.

    In ``The Rose,'' McBroom acknowledges that love can be a painful process that can leave a person feeling hurt and vulnerable. However, she also describes the wonderful moments that one might miss out on if they never take a chance on love, and encourages those without hope to remain optimistic:

    Just remember in the winter

    Far beneath the bitter snows

    Lies the seed that with the sun's love

    In the spring becomes the rose

    McBroom won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song, but was not nominated for an Academy Award. With her `divine' performance, Bette Midler was awarded the 1981 Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

    Read more: musicbanter.com/lyrics/…
    jodie780on May 30, 2012   Link
  • +1
    General CommentTwo days ago, this song was playing in the waiting room at the veterinary hospital while I was waiting for my cat to be seen, she was very weak.

    I was fine until this song began to play and then I lost all control and wept like a baby.

    Later that day I had to make the horrible decision to put my baby girl to sleep. This song will always remind me of the worst day of my life. But also as a reminder of all the happy times we spent during her 17 years in this world.

    I miss her terribly.
    QueenElsaon March 03, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General Comment...sigh...
    catherinekson July 07, 2002   Link

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