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Poems of SR. TERESA, Carmelite of Lisieux

known as
The "Little Flower of Jesus,"



BIRDCAGE OF THE INFANT JESUS

For us, poor exiles from our birth,
God made the pretty little birds;
Among the hills and dales of earth
They sing His praises without words;
But sometimes playful childish hands,
Choosing the ones they like the best,
Keep them in cages, where the bands
Are gilded bars for these oppressed.

O Jesus, little Brother dear!
For us from Heaven didst Thou flee;
Thou knowest well Thy bird cage here
Is Carmel, and Thy birds are we.

Our cage is gilded not at all,
Yet oh! how precious 'tis to me!
To hill or plain from its high wail
Not one of us would wish to flee.
Let not the outer world intrude!
No joy to us it now could bring.
Child Jesus! in our solitude
For Thee, for Thee alone, we sing.
Thy tiny hand has us beguiled;
Thy infant charms no words can tell;
Thy smile, most sweet and Holy Child!
Has won Thy birds to love Thee well.

Here finds the simple, candid soul
The only object of its love;
Here is the vulture's fierce control
No longer dreaded by the dove.

Upon the wings of burning prayer
The ardent heart ascends on high,
As swift the lark doth cleave the air,
With sweet, enraptured, joyful cry.
Here, in Thy praises to engage,
The nightingale and veery came.
O Little Jesus! in Thy cage
Thy birds are carolling Thy Name.

The little bird it always sings,
Nor fear for its small meal doth know;
A grain of wheat contentment brings;
It sows not, spins not, here below.
Within this cage where we have fled,
Is all provided through Thy care;
The one thing needful, Thou hast said,
Is just to love Thee, Child most fair!
So, through the hours, we sing Thy praise,
With glad, pure spirits ever blest.
We know the angels, all the days,
Love Carmel's birds within their nest.

Jesu! Thy bitter tears to dry,
That sinful men have wrung from Thee,
Thy birds to win back souls will try,
By their sweet songs of ecstasy.
One day, when earth and time are o'er,
And Thy clear call to us is given,
Then angel‑hands shall ope the door;
Thy birds shall take their flight to Heaven;
And there, with charming, songful hosts
Of little cherubs glad and gay,
Thy happy birds from Carmel's coasts
Shall praise Thy Holy Name alway.

               December 25, 1896.





THE FLIGHT OF THE HOLY FAMILY INTO EGYPT

A Fragment.
THE ANGEL WARNS ST. JOSEPH.


All swiftly, silently,
To Egypt take your flight!
Depart, this very night!

Herod his fury now,
Is even to madness heaping;
He longs to slay the Lamb
In Mary's tendance sleeping,
Take Mother and Child, and go
From an impending woe.

SONG OF THE ANGELS ACCOMPANYING
THE HOLY FAMILY.


Wonders on wonders piled!
Jesus, of Heaven the Lord,
Now upon earth exiled,
Flee, from a mortal's sword.
So, unto God in flight,
Oh, let us give our love;
Let our white wings tonight
Protect Him from above!
Now bring the flowers most fair
To strew before His way!
A lullaby prepare,
Of songs most sweet and gay!

Console His Mother's heart
By singing of His charms.
How fair, how sweet, Thou art,
Reposing in her arms

Oh, let us speed afar,
For here dire perils are!
Fly, on this very night,
From dangers and from fright!
The Virgin bears our Star,
Beneath her veil afar,
­The Star of the elect,
Whom longing hearts expect.

Behold! Heaven's Lord
Flees from a mortal's sword!

THE ANGEL OF THE DESERT.

I come, I come, to sing your charms divine,
Blest Family who lure me to this place.
In this drear desert, lo! to‑night doth shine
A Star more fair than heaven in all its grace.
But who shall comprehend this mystery:-
He came unto His own -they bade Him go!
A wanderer on the earth He made is He,
And none discern His beauty here below.

But if the great Thine empire now despise,
Thou King of Heaven, Thou mystic promised Star!
Long for Thy reign have looked. the teardimmed eyes,
And long the unhappy sought Thee from afar.
O Word Eternal! Wisdom true and deep!
Thy gifts are here, but they are for the meek:
The childlike soul, the tried, and them who weep,
It is to them, one day, Thy voice shall speak.

For Thou Thy wisdom often dost impart
To ignorant men, if they but humble be;
And Thou dost call the sinful to Thy Heart,
Because in them Thine image Thou dost see.
A day shall come, when, in the selfsame fold,
The lamb beside the lion safe shall feed;
And in Thy refuge here, this desert old,
Thy Name shall call forth many a holy deed.

O hidden God! what virginal souls, one day,
Catching from Thy vast fire of love the flame,
Shall hither haste, where Thou hast led the wav;
And all these wastes for their possession claim.
Their ardent souls, their love like seraphs blest,
Shall fill the angels with supreme delight;
And hell shall tremble at their hymns, addrest
Unto God's greater glory, day and night

Then Satan shall, in frantic jealousy,
Seek to deplete these houses of our Lord;
But knows he not the power and majesty
Of this frail Child, humble, unknown, ignored.
He dreams not that a lowly virgin heart
Forever dwells in safety and in peace;
He dreams not of the strength, beyond his art,
She has from God, whose wonders never cease.

It may be that, one day, Thy spouses dear
Must share Thy exile, O Thou Holy Child!
But none shall quench their love, that burns most clear
Despite their exile and men's fury wild.
Nor shall the vile world's sacrilegious spite
Turn from their goal the virgins of the Lord;
Nor ever soil their robes of spotless white,
Nor mar their likeness to their King adored.

Ungrateful world! thy reign is well nigh done
Dost thou not see how this most holy Child
Culls joyously these roses like the sun,
These martyrs' palms, these lilies undefiled?
Dost thou not see His faithful virgin band,
Holding their burning lamps with love alight
Dost thou not see heaven's portals open stand
The saints to welcome in, to glory bright?

O happy moment! joy that knows no shade!
When the elect in gladness enter there;
And for their love, the great reward is paid,-
To see God's face, that promised Vision fair!
Life's exile o'er, gone are all pain and woe;
E'en faith itself, and hope itself, shall cease;
But everlasting rest those souls shall know.
The ecstasy of love and endless peace.

               January 21, 1896.





THE LITTLE DIVINE BEGGAR OF
CHRISTMAS.


An angel appears, bearing the Child Jesus in
his arms; and he sings as follows:

Sisters! I bring to you the Adored,
The Eternal God, so small, so weak;
I plead for the Incarnate Word,
Because as yet He cannot speak.
To Jesus, exiled from His home,
The cruel world no shelter grants;
And so to Carmel's shade I come,
To find the shelter that He wants.

Ever your praise, your tenderness,
Your welcome sweet, your warm caress,
Be for this Child!
Oh, burn with love, for He loves you,
This Child, who is your God and Lord.
Pathetic mystery! He who begs, tonight, of you,
Is the Eternal Word!

Come then, my Sisters! without fear,
Each in her turn, to Jesus' feet,
Offering your love to Him most dear,
And you shall know His will so sweet,
Yes, I will tell you the desires
Of Jesus born amid the snow;
For you are pure as angels are,
And you can suffer too, you know!

Ever your cares, your suffering,
And all your joys so light of wing,
Be for this Child!
Oh, burn with love, for He loves you,
This Babe, who is your God and Lord!
Pathetic mystery! He who begs, tonight, of you,
Is the Eternal Word!

The angel, having placed the Child Jesus inthe crib, offers to the Mother prioress, and then to all the Carmelites, a basket of little notes or envelopes. Each takes one, haphazard, and without opening it gives it to the angel, who then sings the petition therein contained, -- the gift which the Divine Child asks from each in turn.

I.-1 A GOLD THRONE

Jesus, Christ, your only treasure,
Asks one special gift of you.
No gold throne was in the stable,
Yet such treasure is His due.
Sinners' souls are like the stable,
Bare and cold in winter's snow,
Off'ring to Him no soft shelter,
No bright fire's cheerful glow.
Souls of sinners, save them, Sister!
That the throne our Lord desires;
Seeks He, too, the royal welcome
Of your pure heart's holy fires.

I.-2 SOME MILK.

He Who feeds the souls predestined
With His Essence all Divine,
Makes Himself the Infant Jesus
To be your delight, and mine.
Up in heaven His joy is perfect;
Here below, a beggar He

Quickly fetch some milk, dear Sister;
Baby Jesus thirsts, you see.
Ah! our little Brother Jesus
Smiles on you. Noel! Noel!
Down from heaven to earth He cometh
In your childlike heart to dwell.

I.-3 SOME LITTLE BIRDS

You, dearest Sister! long to know
What you can do for Jesus' sake,
So joyfully I haste to tell
How you His glorious smiles can wake.
Go, catch for Him some charming birds,
And in the stable let them sing,
For they are types of children's souls,
So dear to this Child Christ their King.
Their pretty hymns, their baby prayers,
His sleep like joy bells gently break.
Pray for them then; in heaven one day
Those children's souls your crown will make.

I.-4 A STAR.

Sometimes, when all the skies are black
With gloomy clouds, and no stars shine,
Our little Jesus grieves alone,-
He craves your love, yes, yours and mine.
Then give to Him the light He wants,
Be like a bright and shining star;
And let your virtues, like a lamp,
Shed welcoming radiance near and far.
So may your rays lead souls to heaven,
The sinful souls for whom He died.
This Child Divine, our Morning Star,
Asks you to be His star, His bride.

I.-5 A LYRE

MY little Sister,'waiting there,
Your gift for Bethlehem's Babe to hear,
Your heart for His melodious lyre
Is what He asks in accents clear.
In heaven's high court swells up alway
The angels' song with incense sweet;
And yet He loves, in Carmel's shade,
To hear your praises at His feet.
So, dearest Sister! 'tis your heart,
Whose melodies our Lord desires.
By night, by day, consume away,
With songs of love, in love's sweet fires.

I.-6 SOME ROSES.

Your soul, dear, is a lily sweet,-
Jesus and Mary love it well.
Hear what the heavenly Bridegroom speaks Softly, yet clear as altar bell; -
Ah! if I love the lily white,
Symbol of innocence like snow,
Yet for the rose of penitence
I also feel My heart aglow.
Let your warm tears for sinners fall,-
What joy your love will give Me then!
So can I gather at My Will
Those roses dear, the hearts of men.

I.-7 A VALLEY.

As by the shining of the sun
Nature is glorified and gay;
As by its radiance field and vale
Grow fair and strong and green alway;

So doth our Jesus, Son divine,
Approach you with His sweet caress,
Shining at His own matin hour,
Your loving heart to heal and bless.
Lo! He is born on Christmas morn,
Your exiled soul to find and cheer,
To fill your days with His warm rays:
So be His smiling valley, dear!

I.-8 SOME REAPERS.

Lo! here on earth, 'neath other skies,
In spite of storm and winter's snow
Already our dear Little One
Hath found some harvests here below.
But, ah! to gather them He needs
Reapers on fire with quenchless love,
And glad to suffer or to die
For Him who reigns in Heaven above
­Noel Noel to Carmel's shade
I come, because His will is thine.
Sister! form apostolic souls,
To reap the harvest fields divine.

The following was the stanza that was drawn by Sister Teresa of the Infant Jesus herself. Only three months later she heard the first call of the Divine Master invite her to leave earth for heaven.

I.-9 A BUNCH OF GRAPES

I want some sweet and cooling fruit,
A bunch of grapes so smooth and fair,
To moisten the small, thirsting lips
Of this dear Babe within my care.
Your lot, my Sister! oh, how blest,
For those choice grapes He asks of you,
Within His vineyard to be prest!
The hearts of all men are His due.
His tiny hand like snow‑flake white
Upon your throbbing heart shall lie,
And from all touch of earth's delight
Absorb it into His on high.

I.-10 A LITTLE WHITE HOST.

Oh! we how with each morning's light
Jesus, the Child divinely fair,
Into a little snow white host
Transforms Himself, that you may share
His life; and yet with greater love,
He longs to change you into Him.
Your heart His precious treasure is,
His happiness, His joy supreme.
Noel! Noel! from heaven He comes,
To fill your soul with glorious light;
The Lamb of God to you descends,
Now be His pure white host tonight!

II-1 A SMILE.

Ah! the wicked world despises
Love that Jesus feels for men;
And His heavenly eyes are moistened
With hot bitter tears for them;
And His little arms He stretches,
Dearest Sister, unto you.
Shall I tell you what the comfort
That I think He seems to sue?
See! His look is asking of you,
And His sweet eyes seem to say:
Smile on all! That smile suffices
To wipe all My tears away.

II.-2 SOME PLAYTHINGS.

Would you like to be the plaything
Of this Child so fair and sweet?
Would you, dear one! like to please Him?
Then lie humbly at His feet.
If He chooses to caress you,
If He lifts you to His breast,
Yes, if He seems tired of you,
Count yourself among the blest.
Be His happy Christmas plaything,
Seeking just to do His will;
And in heaven with countless blessings
He, your happy heart, will fill.

II.-3 A PILLOW.

Oft I see the Baby Jesus
Wakeful in His manger bed.
Would you know the reason? Dear ones,
There's no pillow for His head.
Ah! I know your ardent longing
To console Him night and day.
Give your heart to be His pillow,
That is what He wants alway;
And be ever meek and humble,
Then you will be greatly blest.
You will hear Him softly saying:
In your heart how sweet My rest!

II.-4 A FLOWER.

All the earth with snow is covered,
Everywhere the white frosts reign;
Winter and his gloomy courtiers
Hold their court on earth again.
But for you has bloomed the Flower
0f the fields, Who comes to earth
From the fatherland of heaven,
Where eternal spring has birth.
Near the Rose of Christmas, Sister!
In the lowly grasses hide,
And be like the humble flowerets,-
Of heaven's King the lowly bride!

II.-5 SOME BREAD.

Day by day, at morn and even,
Still the holy words are said:
O our Father up in Heaven!
Give to us our daily bread,
Yet your God, become your Brother,
Suffers hunger as you do;
And His childish voice is asking
For a little bread from you.
Ah! my Sister! Jesus wishes
Just your love,- how great your bliss!
Let your soul be pure and spotless,
For His daily bread is this.

II.-6 A MIRROR.

Children like to have you place them,
Near a mirror clear and fair;
Then they greet with childish rapture
The bright face that they see there.
Come, then, to the favored stable,
Let your soul like crystal glow.
Let the Word, become an Infant,
In your heart His likeness know!
Sister, be the living image,
Of your Spouse,- His mirror clear;
All the beauty of your Jesus
He would have in you appear.

II.-7 A PALACE.

The great and noble of the earth,
In palaces they proudly dwell;
The poor and lonely find their home
In hut, in cabin, and in cell.
So in a humble cattle shed
The Christ Child lies, this Christmas night;
Leaving His palace in the skies,
He veils His glory's dazzling light.
Your heart loves poverty, I know;
You count yourself divinely blest;
So Jesus finds a palace home
Within your humble, happy breast.

II.-8 A CROWN OF LILIES.

Sinners will crown with thorns, one day
The holy, heavenly head of Christ.
What pains and sorrows will be His,
To gain us graces all unpriced.
Now may your virginal sweet soul
Make Him tonight His woes forget;
And for His royal lily crown
Your Sisters' souls before Him set!
Draw very near to Jesus' throne,
To charm His lovely tear dimmed eyes;
Make of these virgin souls His crown
Of snow white lilies beyond price!

III.-1 SOME BONBONS.

Sister dear, the little ones
Like so much the sweet bonbons!
Bring some then, and quickly fill
Jesus' small white hand tonight!
By His smile He doth invite
You to do His childish will.
This wee King, so frail, so weak,
Carmel's candies He doth seek; -
What they are, you surely guess!
Give Him your austerity
And your holy poverty,
He your gift will quickly bless.

III.-2 A CARESS.
Little Jesus, dear, from you
Nothing more doth softly sue
Than a very sweet caress.
Give Him all your love today,
And your gift He will repay;
With His love your soul will bless.

If a Sister weep tonight,
Sore at heart where all are bright,
Ah! at once, with tenderness,
Beg the little Holy Child
That His small hand undefiled
Drv her tears with its caress.

III.-3 A CRADLE.

Many hearts God's favors want,
Would have Jesus always grant
Gifts and presents without end.
If He seem awhile to sleep,
Few their watch beside Him keep;
Few remain His faithful friend.

Get Him sleep that none may break;
Though we know His Heart doth wake;
Even in dreams our Jesus weeps.
So His cradle, Sister, be!
Guard the sweet Lamb tenderly,
Smiling on Him while He sleeps.

III-4 SOME LINENS.

See the dear Child's tiny hand
Point - to make you understand -
At the rough and rasping straw.
Won't you grant His wish tonight,
And bring linens pure and white,
O'er His manger bed to draw?

Make excuses kind and true,
Whatsoe'er your Sisters do,
Loving all for Christ their King.
Thus your ardent charity,
And your true simplicity,
Are the linens you can bring.
III.-5 SOME FIRE.

Our sweet Jesus, Fire of love,
Light and Warmth of heaven above,
In the stable, cold is He!
Yet, in the far, shining sky,
Angels, living flames on high,
Wait on Him in ecstasy.

Here on earth 'tis you must light
Blazing fires of love tonight,
In your heart, all free from sin;
Little shivering Jesus warm
In the shelter of your arm,
By the souls your prayers shall win!

III.-6 A CAKE.

Well we know that children small
Eagerly for cakes will call!
This dear Child will not disdain
Even such a gift tonight!
Offer it with great delight;
You His happy smile will gain.

Know you what to this Child King
Real content will surely bring?
'Tis obedience prompt and true.
As He bowed to Mary's will,
So do you the rule fulfil,
Such the cake He asks of you.

III.-7 SOME HONEY.

In the pretty floweret's cup,
When the morning sun comes up,
You can see the tiny bee,
Flitting fast through summer hours,
Visiting the woodland bowers,
Gathering honey steadily.

Ahl of love your treasure make;
And, each day, for Christ's dear sake,
To His holy cradle come.
All the honey of your love
Give, sweet bee! to this meek Dove;
Make His Heart your hive and home!

III-8. A LAMB.

Would you charm the Lamb of God?
In the path that He hath trod
Tread today with willing feet!
Leaving all things here below,
Seek alone His will to know;
Do His will surpassing sweet!

O my Sister! be His own;
Seek for naught but God alone!
He will give you perfect rest.
Mary, leaning o'er His bed,
Will see another childish head,
Close to His, and oh! how blest.

The Angel, taking again the Child Jesus in his arms, sings what follows:

The dear Child Jesus thanks you all,
For all your gifts, this Christmas night;
And all your names His tiny hand
Within His book of life will write.
Since in this Carmel He hath found
Such joy and peace,
Rewards in heaven He'll store for you,
That shall not cease.
And if vou ever faithful are
To all the vows vou make tonight,
Then love will give you wings to fly
Unto a far sublimer height.

Your exile o'er,
Jesus and Mary you shall see
Forevermore!




THE ANGELS OF THE CRIB.

FRAGMENT.


THE ANGEL OF THE CHILD JESUS.

Thou Word of God, Thou Glory of God!
In awe I gazed on Thee above;
And now I see that Glory of God,
That Word of God, made Man through love.
O Child, whose light doth blind the sight
Of angels in high heaven divine!
Thou'rt come to save the world tonight,
And who can fathom that love of Thine?
In swaddling bands
The Child God fies.
Lord of all lands!
Trembling before Thy face I veil mine eyes.

Yes, who can fathom this marvellous thing?
God makes Himself a little Child,
He, the eternal, almighty King,
Afar from His own heaven exiled!
Fain would I give Thee love for love!
Thee will I guard by day and night,
My utter fealty to prove,
Thou tiny Jesu, Light of Light!
Thy cradle so dear
Draws angels anear.
O Child God! now
Trembling before that humble crib I bow.

While earth has power from heaven to bring
My King to want and cold and woe,
Heaven holds no longer anything
To keep me from that world below.
My wings shall shield Thy Baby head;
Thee will I follow everywhere;
Beneath Thy tiny feet I'll fling
The sweetest flowers and most fair.

Oh, would some radiant star might fall,
To form Thy cradle, Baby bright!
Would I the dazzling snow could call,
To be Thy curtains pure and white!
Would all the lofty hills might bow
In lowly homage at Thy feet!
Oh, would the fields might bloom for Thee,
Celestial blossoms heavenly sweet!

For all the flowers are smiles of God,
Are distant echoes from His throne,
Are notes that wander far abroad
From that great harp He holds alone.
Those notes of harmony divine
Relate His goodness unto men,
And in their melody combine
To tell His saving love again.
O that sweet melody,
Exquisite harmony,
Silence of flowers
Ye tell His greatness, His wonders, His powers!

Well know I, Jesu! that Thy friends,
Thy dearest friends, are living fiowers.
Thou travellest to earth's farthest ends,
To cull them for heaven's fadeless bowers.

Souls are the flowers with beauty rife
That draw Thee from the heavens high;
Thy tiny hand first gave them life,
And Thou for them wilt gladly die.
Mystery ineffable!
Thou, Word adorable,
Surely shalt one day weep
When Thou the harvest of those flowers shalt reap.

THE ANGEL OF THE HOLY FACE.

Yes, from the morning of Thy days, dear Child!
Thy blessed Face is bathed in burning tears.
Those tears upon that Face all undefiled
Still shall flow on throughout Thy earthly years.
O Face divine!
So fair Thou art
From angel eyes
The glories of the skies depart.

Under its veil of anguish sore and dread,
I see Thy loveliness all charms above;
In Thy worn, pallid Face, O Jesu dead!
I see Thy Child face in its perfect love.

For pain to Thee, my Jesus! was so dear
That even Thy Baby eyes the future saw,
And Thou didst long to drink the chalice drear,
Thy very dreams could Thee to Calvary draw.
O wonderful dream!
Thou Child of a day,
From Thy face but one beam
Thrills my heart with its ray.

THE ANGEL OF THE RESURRECTION.

Angel of man's Redeemer! weep no more.
I come with comfort for sad hearts and sore.
This Child shall yet gain
All men's hearts as their King;
He shall arise and reign
Almighty, triumphing.

O God! concealed in childish guise before us,
I see Thee glorious,
O'er all things victorious.

I shall roll back the great tomb's rocky door,
I shall behold Thy lovely Face once more,
And I shall sing,
And I shall then rejoice,
When I shall see my King,
And hear again His voice.

Thy childish eyes, though dim tonight with tears,
Shall shine with heavenly light throughout the eternal years.
O Word of God!
Thy speech, like burning flame,
Shall sound one day abroad,
And all Thy love proclaim.

THE ANGEL OF THE EUCHARIST.

Gaze on, dear Angel, heavenward flown,
Gaze, while our King ascends on high;
But I, to seek His altar throne,
Down to the distant earth will fly.
Veiled in His Eucharist I see
The Almighty Lord, the Undefiled,
The Master of all things that be,
More tiny than the humblest child.

Here will I dwell in this biest piace,
The sanctuary of my King;
And here, before His veiled Face,
My hymns of ardent love will sing.
Here, to my heaven strung angel lyre,
My praise I'll chant, by night, by day,
To Him, the Feast for saint's desire,
To Him, the sinner's Hope and Stay.

Would that by miracle, I too
Could feed upon this heavenly Bread;
Could taste that Blood forever new,
That Blood which was for all men shed!
At least, with some pure longing soul,
I'll share my fires of love divine,br> That so, all fearless, glad and whole,
It may approach its Lord and mine.

THE ANGEL OF THE LAST JUDGMENT.

Soon shall the awful day of judgment come,
This wicked world shall feel the avenging flame;
All men shall hear pronounced their endless doom,
And these to bliss shall pass, and those to shame.
Then shall we see our God in glory bright,
No longer hidden in this cradle small;
Then shall we sing His triumph after fight,
And then proclaim Him Lord and King of all.

As stars shine out when furious storms are passed,
His eyes shall shine, now veiled in blood and tears;
And His eternal splendor shall at last
Appear again, after these anguished years.
Upon the clouds our Jesus shall be borne,
Beneath the standard of the cross on high;
And evil men who hailed Him once in scorn
Shall know their awful judge is drawing nigh.

Ah, ye shall tremble, habitants of earth!
Ah, ye shall tremble on that final day,
No longer able to withstand the wroth
Of this dear Child, the God of love today.
For you He chose to tread the path of pain,
Seeking your hearts alone, to Him so dear:
But when at last He comes to earth again,
How shall ye quail before His Face in fear!

ALL THE ANGELS, with the exception of THE ANGEL
OF THE LAST JUDGMENT.

O Jesu, deign to hear the prayer,
That we, Thy Angels offer Thee!
Thy people save, Thy people spare,
Thou who didst come the world to free!

With Thy small hand avert this dart,
Appease this Angel with the sword;
Save every meek and contrite heart
That seeks Thy mercy, dearest Lord!

THE CHILD JESUS.

My faithful Angels, tried and true!
Far from the heavenland of your birth,
Hear, for the first time, speak to you
The Eternal Word made Man on earth!

I love you well, O spirits pure!
Angels from heaven's high courts above!
Yet men I love with love as sure,
Yea, with an everlasting love.

I made their infinite desires,
Their souls were made at My decree;
A heart that kindles with My fires
Becomes a heaven on earth for Me.

The Angel of the Infant Jesus asks Him to gather upon earth an abundant harvest of inno­cent souls, before they have been tainted by the impure breath of sin.

ANSWER OF THE CHILD JESUS.

Dear Angel of My childhood's hours!
I grant the answer to thy prayer.
Many shall be the innocent flowers
I will preserve all lily fair.

Yes, I will cull those blossoms gay,
Fresh with their pure baptismal dew;
And they shall bloom in endless day,
In ecstasy forever new.

Their fair corollas, silvery bright,
More brilliant than a thousand fires,
Shall be the Milky Way of light
'Mid all the starry heavenly choirs.

I must have lilies for My crown,-
The Lily of the Field am I!
And I must have to grace my throne,
A sheaf of lilies in the sky.

The Angel of the Holy Face asks pardon for sinners.

ANSWER OF THE CHILD JESUS

Thou who dost gaze upon My Face
In ecstasy of seraph love,
Leaving for love of it thy place
Of glory in My heaven above!

Thy prayer I hear, I grant thy plea.
Each soul that on My name sahll call
Shall find relief, shall be set free
From Sin's dark curse, from Satan's thrall.

Thou who dost seek to honor here
My Cross, My Passion, My bruised Face:
Learn now this mystery, angel dear!
Each soul that suffers shares thy grace.

The radiance of its pain borne now,
In heaven upon thy face shall shine;
The martyr's halo decks thy brow,
His glory shall be drawn from thine.

The Angel of the Eucharist asks what he can do to console our Lord for the ingratitude of men.

ANSWER OF THE CHILD JESUS.

Dear Angel of the Eucharist!
Thou, thou dost charm Me every hour;
Thy song, by heaven's own breezes kissed,
Over My suffering soul hath power.

Ah, the great thirst of My desires!
I crave, I crave, the hearts of men.
Dear Angel, melt them with thy fires,
And win them to My Heart again!

Would each anointed priest might be
Like Seraphim beyond the skies,
What time he comes to offer Me
My pure and holy Sacrificel

To work such miracle of grace,
It needs must be that night and day,
Souls near the attar seek a place
To watch and suffer, weep and pray.

The Angel of the Resurrection asks what will become of the poor exiled ones left on earth when the Saviour shall have ascended into heaven.

ANSWER OF THE CHILD JESUS.

Back to My Father I shall go,
Thither to draw the men I love;
And heaven's long bliss they then shall know,
When I shall welcome them above.

When the last hour of time appears,
My flock shall come again to Me;
And I shall be, for endless years,
Their Light, their Life, their Ecstasy

THE ANGEL OF THE LAST JUDGMENT.

Goodness supremel and dost Thou then forget
Sinners must meet at last, the doom decreed ?
Dost Thou forget, in Thy great love, that yet,
Their number is nigh infinite indeed ?

At the last judgment I shall punish crime,
Evil before My wrath shall shrink and bow;
My sword is ready ... Jesu! 'tis the time.
My sword is ready to avenge Thee now.

THE CHILD JESUS

Great Angel, turn aside thy sword
I am the Messenger of Peace.
The nature taken by thy Lord
'Tis not thy work to judge. O cease!

'Tis I shall judge the human race,
Jesus My name, all names above.
I grant My elect ones boundless grace.
For men I died, and I am Love!

Dost thou not know that, every day,
The blasphemies of faithless lips
Before one love‑glance pass away,
And find therein assured eclipse?

The souls I choose, the souls I spare,
Shall reign in glory like the sun.
'Tis Mine own life I give them there,
And they and I shall there be one.

THE ANGEL OF THE LAST JUDGMENT.

Before Thee, Child divine, the Cherubim bow lowly,
Lost in amaze as they Thy love all boundless see.
Fain would we die like Thee, on Calvary's summit
holy,
Fain would we die like Thee!

REFRAIN.

Sung by all the Angels.

How great the bliss of man, Thy low and humble creature.
In ecstasy would fain each seraph undefiled
Put off, O Jesus sweet, his grand angelic nature,
Would fain become a child!

               Noel, 1894






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