When love beckons to you, follow him, though his ways are hard and steep. And when his wings enfold you, yield to him, though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you. And when he speaks to you, believe in him, though his voice may shatter your dreams as the north wind lays waste the garden.



For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you. Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning. Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun, so shall he descend to our roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth.



But if in your fear, you would seek only love’s peace and love’s pleasure, then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love’s threshing-floor, into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears. Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself. Love possesses not, nor would it be possessed, for love is sufficient unto love.



Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself. But if you love and must have desires, let these be your desires:



To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.



To know the pain of too much tenderness.



To be wounded by your understanding of love;



And to bleed willingly and joyfully.



To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;



To rest at the noon hour and meditate on love’s ecstasy;



To return home at eventide with gratitude;



And then to sleep with a payer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.


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