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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By II. St. Bernard’s Hymn; or, the Loving Soul’s Jubilation. I. “Jesus, the very thought of Thee”

Edward Caswell (1814–1878)

Jesu dulcis memoria

JESU, the very thought of Thee

With sweetness fills my breast,

But sweeter far Thy face to see,

And in Thy presence rest.

Nor voice can sing, nor heart can frame,

Nor can the memory find,

A sweeter sound than Thy blest name,

O Saviour of mankind!

O hope of every contrite heart!

O joy of all the meek!

To those who fall, how kind Thou art!

How good to those who seek!

But what to those who find? ah, this

Nor tongue nor pen can show:

The love of Jesus, what it is,

None but His loved ones know.

O Jesu, light of all below!

Thou Fount of life and fire!

Surpassing all the joys we know,

And all we can desire;—

Thee will I seek, at home, abroad,

Who everywhere art nigh;

Thee in my bosom’s cell, O Lord,

As on my bed I lie.

With Mary to Thy tomb I’ll haste,

Before the dawning skies,

And all around with longing cast

My soul’s enquiring eyes.

Beside Thy grave will make my moan,

And sob my heart away;

Then at Thy feet sink trembling down,

And there adoring stay;

Nor from my tears and sighs refrain,

Nor Thy dear knees release,

My Jesu, till from Thee I gain

Some blessed word of peace!