Canticle of the Bride of the Lamb
The angel spoke to me, saying,
“Come here. I will show you
the bride, the wife of the Lamb."
He took me in spirit to a great,
high mountain and showed me
the holy city Jerusalem coming
down out of heaven from God.
It gleamed with the splendor
the Bride of the Lamb!
She is brown and swarthy, a black jewel
more precious than Onyx; her hair is spun
of gold with eyes more limpid than the vault
of heaven, darker and deeper than earth,
fairer still than spun samite shimmering
white. Ageless beauty of all ages, youth
gathered in years, each the pure breath
of a child. A Cedar of Lebanon towering
in might, in thundered thickets of swords
that have no sharp blades; bronzed of hand
and brazen in strength; halt, seamed and
seer, and blossoming still!
Her voice is rippled and laughter sings
on her lips, speaking demurely in whispers
of love that has come ... She is jubilant,
dancing the dance of the Bride, and her
footsteps are traced through fallow years
of our lives, among nightshade and roses
we have felt her soft step; our dreamless
waking she sows with the dream of all dreams
... her Lover is come!
Who can she be, this Bride of the Light,
betrothed of the Dawn that no longer knows
Dreamer, dreamer ... awaken! The banquet
is set and row upon row the stone vases
of Cana are filled to the brim!
We well know the Groom, but to whom does
He come with that Chalice of Love first
drawn from the urn?
To you ... and to me ... to them ... and
See the Bride to Whom the Bridegroom is
come! To them, from all ages — and from
them to us ... in every age. The Beloved
of the Beloved.