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About this Poem 

“The Florist Wears Knee-Breeches” was first published in March of 1916 in Others: A Magazine of the New Verse, a New York City based magazine which focused on modernist poetry. The poem was posthumously published in the collection Opus Posthumous: Poems, Plays, Prose (Knopf, 1957).

The Florist Wears Knee-Breeches

My flowers are reflected
In your mind
As you are reflected in your glass.
When you look at them,
There is nothing in your mind
Except the reflections
Of my flowers.
But when I look at them
I see only the reflections
In your mind,
And not my flowers.
It is my desire
To bring roses,
And place them before you
In a white dish.

This poem is in the public domain. 

This poem is in the public domain. 

Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens

Though he did not receive widespread recognition until late in his life, Wallace Stevens—whose work is known for its imagination, whimsy, and relation to both the English Romantics and French symbolists—is now considered one of the major American poets of the century. 

by this poet

poem

But not on a shell, she starts,
Archaic, for the sea.
But on the first-found weed
She scuds the glitters,
Noiselessly, like one more wave.

She too is discontent
And would have purple stuff upon her arms,
Tired of the salty harbors,
Eager for the brine and bellowing

poem
The poem must resist the intelligence 
Almost successfully. Illustration: 

A brune figure in winter evening resists 
Identity. The thing he carries resists 

The most necessitous sense. Accept them, then,
As secondary (parts not quite perceived 

Of the obvious whole, uncertain particles 
Of the certain solid,
poem
Light the first light of evening, as in a room
In which we rest and, for small reason, think
The world imagined is the ultimate good.

This is, therefore, the intensest rendezvous. 
It is in that thought that we collect ourselves,
Out of all the indifferences, into one thing:

Within a single thing, a single