Et balsamo suavior

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Still using Father Caswall's translation, I am giving only a selection of the twenty-four verses that make up this section of the hymn. Father Caswall renders the text with a certain liberty; it is not a literal translation. He does capture, nonetheless, something of the delicacy and sweetness of the Latin.

At Lauds

O Jesu, thou the beauty art
Of angel worlds above;
Thy name is music to the heart,
Enchanting it with love.

For thee I yearn, for thee I sigh;
When wilt thou come to me,
And make me glad eternally
With the blest sight of thee?

O Jesu, love unchangeble,
For whom my soul doth pine!
O fruit of life celestial!
O sweetness all divine!

O kindness infinite, supreme!
My joy and true repose!
O depth of charity extreme,
Which no abatement knows!

'Tis good that I my love should give
Save thee to none beside;
And dying to myself should live
For Jesus crucified!

O my sweet Jesu, hear the sighs
Which unto thee I send;
To thee mine inmost spirit cries,
My being's hope and end!

Thy presence with me I desire,
Wherever I may be;
This, Lord, is all that I require
For my felicity!

Thy kiss is bliss beyond compare,
A bliss for evermore;
O, that thy visits were less rare,
And not so quickly o'er!

Now have I gained my long desire,
Now what I sought is mine;
Now is my heart, O Christ on fire
With thy true love divine.

O fairest of the sons of day!
More fragrant than the rose!
O brighter than the dazzling ray
That in the sunbeam glows!

Return, return, pure Light of Light,
To thy dread throne again;
Go forth victorious from the fight,
And in thy glory reign.

Lead where thou wilt, I follow thee,
And will not stay behind;
For thou hast torn my heart from me,
O Glory of our kind!

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About Dom Mark

Dom Mark Daniel Kirby is Conventual Prior of Silverstream Priory in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland. The ecclesial mandate of his Benedictine community is the adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation, and in intercession for the sanctification of priests.

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