Until I give my heartbeat back to You
(Or rather till You take it back from me
To tune its pulsing to eternity,
Its murmurings by mercy sweet renew);
Until its song takes on a deeper hue
And sure as beads upon the rosary
It beat by beat moves toward a mystery
So deep the human heart cannot construe,
Give me the time its waywardness to mend,
The grace its strange arrhythmia to end.
When I its earthly fires do enflame,
Direct my ardor once again above;
And when my heart too coolly bears Your Name,
Then break it open, if You must, with love.
Jeffrey Essmann is an essayist and poet living in New York. His poetry has appeared in numerous magazines and literary journals, among them Dappled Things, the St. Austin Review, U.S. Catholic, America Magazine, Edge of Faith, Grand Little Things, Agape Review, and various venues of the Benedictine monastery with which he is an oblate. He is editor of the Catholic Poetry Room.