Sunday, August 07, 2005

Dark Night - St John of the Cross

On a dark secret night,
starving for love and deep in flame,
O happy lucky flight!
unseen I slipped away,
my house at last was calm and safe.

Blackly free from light,
disguised and down a secret way,
O happy lucky flight!
in darkness I escaped,
my house at last was calm and safe.

On that happy night - in
secret; no-one saw me through the dark -
and I saw nothing then,
no other light to mark
the way but fire pounding in my heart.

That flaming guided me
more firmly than the noonday sun,
and waiting there was he
I knew so well - who shone
where nobody appeared to come.

O night, my guide!
O night more friendly than the dawn!
O tender night that tied
lover and loved one,
loved one in the lover fused as one!

On my flowering breasts
which I had saved for him alone,
he slept and I caressed
and fondled him with love,
and cedars fanned the air above.

Wind from the castle wall
while my fingers played in his hair:
its hand serenely fell
wounding my neck, and there
my senses vanished in the air.

I lay. Forgot my being,
and on my love I leaned my face.
All ceased. I left my being,
leaving my cares to fade
among the lilies far away.

St John of the Cross (Mystic & Visionary, 15th Century Spain)


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