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The Soul’s Desire sent Forth to Seek the Beloved One.

Thus spake the soul to her desire—

Then spake the Host—

Then sped the messenger swiftly home, and said—

And they ask—

74

The soul said—

“Speed forth afar and see

Where may my Belovèd be,

And say to Him, ‘His love I crave.’”

Then fled the swift desire afar,

And rose beyond sun, moon, and star,

And called before the heavenly door,

“Lord, open unto me!”

“What need hast thou,

That thou dost thus implore?”

“O Lord, I come with the prayer of one

Who weepeth upon the earth alone—

The fish on the sand must pine.”

“Go back! no door is unbarred to thee

Till thou bring the sorrowful soul to Me,

For the need is Mine.”

“The Master calleth Come!

Arise and shine!”

Then she as on summer winds doth rise

In joyful flight through the starry skies,

And there meet her angels twain;

For God hath sent two angels fleet,

The well-belovèd soul to meet.

“What seekest thou thus afar?

With the dark earth art thou clad.”

“Greet me better than so,

For to Him who loveth me well I go,

And I am no more sad.

Lo! dimmed as ye near the earth below,

Is the sweet light of your eyes;

And with light of God do I shine and glow

As aloft I rise.”

Then with an angel on either hand,

The soul sped through the skies,

And when she came to the angel land,

To the country of Paradise,

She was a stranger guest no more,

For to her was opened the heavenly door,

She saw the Beloved Face.

Forth flowed her heart in weeping blest,

She said, “My Lord, I have found my rest

In the glory of Thy grace.

I needs must praise Thee and adore,

For evermore, for evermore.

Whence came I here? I am lost in Thee;

I can think no more of the earth below,

Nor of the sorrow and weeping there.

I had thought to tell Thee my grief and woe,

But, Lord, I have seen Thee, and nought I know,

But that Thou art fair.”

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