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Poems of St. Teresa, Carmelite of Lisieux, known as the 'Little Flower of Jesus'
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THE QUEEN OF HEAVEN TO HER LITTLE
MARY.

TO A POSTULANT NAMED MARY.

Could I some childlike spirit see,

Resembling Christ, my little Child,

Then she with Him should cradled be

Upon my bosom undefiled.

Angelic spirits, hovering near,

Would envy such celestial bliss;

Yet Thee I chose, so come then, dear!

My Child awaits thy timid kiss.

Oh, Jesus’ sister thou shalt be, —

I choose thee for “this better part.”

Wilt gladly bear Him company?

Then shalt thou rest upon my heart.

And I will shield thee ‘neath my veil,

Near Bethlehem’s Babe so fair and bright.

Oh, thou shalt think the stars are pale,

Compared with this divine delight.

But would’st forever stay with me,

And with this Christ-Child, in my care?

Then thou all fitly dressed must be

In childhood’s graces heavenly fair.

Upon thy brow mine eyes must trace

Thy light of purity divine;

Simplicity’s most tender grace

Through all things in thy life must shine.

God, Three in One, and One in Three,

By angels tremblingly adored,

Asks gently to be called by thee

“Flower of the Fields,” that simple word.

As fair white daisies lift their face

With steadfast meekness to the skies,

So thou must look with kindred grace

Within the Christ-Child’s holy eyes.

To worldly men no charm appears

In this meek King Who wears no crown.

Thou oft shalt see the burning tears

From Jesus’ eyes fail swiftly down.

Then thine own pains thou must forget,

To calm and soothe our Blessed One;

Then thou must prize the vows that set

Thy place so close to Him alone.

Our God, Whose mighty power controls

Fury of flood and force of flame,

Now lieth low, to save men’s souls,

A Child enclothed in our shame.

The Word, the Father’s Word on high,

My little Lamb, thy Brother dear,

Now speaks no word, He breathes no sigh;

Silent and dumb He lieth here.

That silence forms the mystic sign

Of love beyond all utterance deep;

Its meaning thou must well divine

And day by day like silence keep.

And if, at times, His eyelids close,

Rest then near Him in perfect peace;

His Sacred Heart no slumber knows,

His love for thee shall never cease.

Nor think, dear Mary, anxiously,

About the task of every day;

To love thy blessed work shall be,

Its holy crown be thine for aye.

Lo! if some voice reproaches thee

Because no great things thou hast done,

Oh, make this answer steadfastly:

“But I Ioved much!” So heaven is won.

Our Lord Himself thy crown shall weave;

And if thou seek His love alone,

If all for Him thou gladly leave,

Near His for aye shall be thy throne.

When life’s long vigil is all past,

Heav’n’s dawn shall break in joy for thee;

And face to face, at last, at last,

The Vision of God shall welcome thee!

CHRISTMAS, 1894

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