A poem by Abbot Francis Benedict, O.S.B.
My first love,
my best love,
fiery torrent of jealousy,
wanting all of me eternally;
bleeding pierced heart
dying for unquenchable love of me.
Divine and unrequited lover,
waiting for me to hear your whispered voice,
drawing me into the embrace of your friendship,
willing to teach me of your abundance
if only I would care to listen;
offering me no less than yourself,
your pulsing, enlivening Spirit
to indwell my being beyond measure.
Why do I not care to drink deeply of you,
Afraid to die of love
for you as you for me?
Purge away my hardness,
amputate my fear;
boil away my coldness,
break the wall of false attachment
that pays homage to a hollow god.
There is no other love like you
to cherish such as me:
half a friend.
And yet your love for me
is all-consuming, all-pursuing;
a holocaust of self-forgetfulness
waiting for a simple glance
of heart to Heart.
So, in a moment
this perishing body
a tent of meeting,
a tender kiss,
a nuptial promise
of unending bliss;
losing self in love.
For this was I created:
you in me and I in you,
Originally published in Valyermo Benedictine, vol. I, no. 2 (Summer, 1990), pp. 18-19.