Thanks for all of your comments. The winning verse is number two. The total number of votes tallied between my blog and Facebook comments were eighteen. Six votes went to version #1. Eight votes for version #2, and four for #3.
I’m still a little partial to number one, red, red, because that was the original draft, but I’m going along with the popular vote for crimson. I believe it fits the best with the word, vivid, and at this point I’m not about to start another word search to replace vivid. Crimson is also an adjective, and while I like #3, budding, it is a verb.
One reader pointed out that a rose bud isn’t vivid in color. Good point. Another voter picked version three, budding, because a fall leaf is the end to a season, and a budding rose reminds us of the youthful spring. Lovely thought.
It was fun hearing from you all.
The Japanese maple flutters
its three remaining leaves
begging me to notice
Vivid as a crimson rose