OF SAINT THOMAS AQUINAS
from The Confessions
I loved You,
Beauty so old and so new:
late have I loved You.
And, see, You were within me
and I was in the external world
and sought You there,
and in my unlovely state
I plunged into those lovely
created things which You made.
You were with me,
and I was not with You.
The lovely things kept me
far from You, though if they
did not have existence
in You, they had no existence at all.
You called and cried out loud
and shattered my deafness.
You were radiant and resplendent,
You put to flight my blindness.
You were fragrant,
and I drew in my breath
and now pant after You.
I tasted You, and I feel but hunger
and thirst for You.
You touched me, and I am set on fire
to attain that peace which is Yours.
Give me one
and he feels what I am saying.
Give me one who desires,
give me one who hungers,
give me one traveling
and thirsting in this solitude
and sighing for the fountain
of an eternal homeland,
give me such a one and he knows
what I am saying.
But if I speak to someone coldly unresponsive, he
knows not what I speak.
[Saint Augustine Confessions,
translated by Henry Chadwick (Oxford University
Press, 1991), pp. 201 and Saint Augustine: Tractates
on the Gospel of John 11-27, translated by
John W. Rettig, The Fathers of the Church
Number 79 (Washington: The Catholic University
of America Press, 1988) tr. 26.4, p. 263]
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