In the Western tradition the rose is the perfect model of a flower, a symbol of the heart, of the center of the universe, of the cosmic wheel and of course an emblem of divine, romantic and passionate love.
At the forefront in the painting, we see a rose in full bloom, its petals turning out eagerly towards the rising sun – a motion resembling that of a beautiful woman waking up in the morning. It is reinforced by the surrounding sister-buds quietly waiting in readiness to unfold in similar glory. This upward thrust, to join sunshine and love, is set against the backdrop of the contrastingly still oval of the lake. And the shape of the half-opened budding flower head becomes a goblet filled with the elixir of everlasting life.
An amazing day is breaking, as recorded in the well-known words of the Russian poet Alexander Pushkin: