John of the Cross: More Poems...
  The Ascent of Mount Carmel

In a dark night,
With anxious love inflamed,
O happy lot!
Forth unobserved I went,
My house being now at rest.

In darkness and in safety,
By the secret ladder, disguised,
O happy lot!
In darkness and concealment,
My house being now at rest.

In the happy night,
In secret, seen of none,
Seeing nought myself,
Without other light or guide
Save that which in my heart was burning.
The Ascent of Mount Carmel

That light guided me
More surely than the noonday sun
To the place He was waiting for me,
Whom I knew well,
And where none appeared.

O guiding night ;
O night more lovely than the dawn ;
O night that hast united
The lover with His beloved,
And changed her into love On my flowery bosom,
Kept whole for Him alone
There He reposed and slept ;
And I caressed Him, and the waving
Of the cedars fanned Him.

As I scattered His hair in the breeze
That blew from the turret,
He struck me in the neck
With His gentle hand,
And all sensation left me.

I continued in oblivion lost,
My head was resting on my love ;
Lost to all things and myself,
And amid the lilies forgotten,
Threw all my cares away.

 

 

This immortal poem of St. John of the Cross

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