Olim in Æternum Perpetitur

Ten thousand cent’ries ev’ry time
Is ev’ry second without thee.
Tho’ drought and flood assail my heart
Yet in my soul, a foaming sea,
The deepest cavern has thy name
Inscribed upon the inner-place,
Thy name entwined with God’s in love,
Reflected in the water’s face.

How should I say what I would say to you,
Though by my word in faithfulness ’tis true,
That kindles flame and pounds the heart anew?
Begone, o heart! But still it could not sue:
When thousand razor-leaves had piercèd through
Forsake eternal love it would not do.

For many times I’d questioned God His will:
Was this for good, or was’t for work of ill?
Far better not to let for heartstrings taut
Than melt two hearts with harp and break for naught,
So wound the marrow more than mocking scorn:
I would not live to leave your bosom torn.

Withal our lot for purposes divine
Is made; we’ve only thus a lucid sign
To do with what is giv’n. Long years I prayed
To God to lead me to the one He bade.
For us He answered in His chosen time,
Transforming us to oak and lime –

To bud in wintry blasts and storms,
And weather trials, toils and fears;
To hear and follow joyfully
By faith wherever our Lord steers;
To grow together intertwined,
With golden honey to impart;
To love, to cherish in this life
Till sleeping death do then us part.

© 2006 Lue-Yee Tsang


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