Figuring out how to survive when nature and the elements seem to have decided that your life should be miserable is pretty tricky business. When it comes to this rose, though, perseverance seems to transform a normal, run-of-the-mill flower into an extraordinary – if rather misshapen – form of life. Whether or not that's an accomplishment is an open question – and it's one that this poem doesn't even start to tackle. Just pointing out the strength it would take to survive against the odds, though, is a feat in and of itself.
The sea rose is valuable precisely because the sea and the stinging sand have hardened it.
Although we may be tempted to anthropomorphize the sea rose into a suffering human, it actually lives a life that's fairly typical for marine plants.