O Phoenix, cherished bird of Arabia

Poem

O Phoenix, cherished bird of Arabia,
You are the symbol of Christ the Hero.
He, like you, lies unenslaved among the dead.
You die on a scented pyre;
He dies on a tree that offers heaven its perfume.
Your ashes are his marrow;
You bear your ashes to an altar in the burning desert.
Christ, so resurrected, against the azure sky
And the vaults of stars You raise your tree of light.

 

—Translated by Clinton F. Larson from
Theoremes Spirituels” by Jean de la Ceppéde

 

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