"I wrote the first line of Ronsard's lovely little poem"

Pierre de Ronsard (1524–1585), French poet.

The poem that begins with the line quoted by the narrator ("Mignonne, allons voir si la rose") was dedicated to the 15-year-old Cassandre Salviati.

See, Mignonne, hath not the Rose,

That this morning did unclose

Her purple mantle to the light,

Lost, before the day be dead,The glory of her raiment red,

Her colour, bright as yours is bright?


Ah, Mignonne, in how few hours,

The petals of her purple flowers

All have faded, fallen, died;

Sad Nature, mother ruinous,

That seest thy fair child perish thus

'Twixt matin song and even tide.


Hear me, my darling, speaking sooth,

Gather the fleet flower of your youth,

Take ye your pleasure at the best;

Be merry ere your beauty flit,

For length of days will tarnish it

Like roses that were loveliest.