Deo Optimo Maximo       

I cannot understand the rose.

It seems too beautiful to be.

Each time I look its radiance grows

And with it grows its mystery.


God, who commands each single rose,

Gives it perfection like no other,

And lets each distant sun disclose

Flamboyant difference from another.


The rose, like a dawn or twilit sun,

Glows with a colour none can fix -

As easily attempt to stun

Daylight with guttering candle-wicks.


These roses, suns, and greater things,

Like fishes, animals, and birds -

Each one, unique in essence, sings

Through us, who give their praises words.


But we, for whom is this largesse,

In splendour greater than a sun

And more mysterious, confess

Our nothing to the Trisagion.


Towards Him the rose and sunset move;

In Him begin, in Him must end;

And we like them attract His love,

But unlike them can call Him friend.