It's no surprise that red roses are the flowers of erotic love, but I'm always quite taken with the reason for this. In Elizabethan England, the rose was seen to mimic the female genitals: the soft, red folds of the sex, the complexity, the elegance.
Red roses are some of my favourite flowers, but I'm also a fan of birds of paradise. I do wonder if I'd be so enamoured if they'd been differently named, though. There's something about the metaphor that's just so flippin' perfect -- I can't really look at the flowers without seeing the bird. Perhaps what makes them such a sexual flower is their fieriness. The spiky petals are redolent of flames.
Whenever I'm fortunate enough to be sitting near a vase of roses or birds of paradise, I can't really stop myself from touching them. It's to do with their fragility and the perfection of their construction.
I do love touching. As you know.