Now Lord, let Thy servant go in peace,
Unto whom Thy promise is made good,
Now mine eyes indeed have seen His face,
Child promised, Savior of the world.
Dim these eyes have grown as years have passed,
In toils and labors long in Thine employ,
Mortal still I am though I outlast,
Mortal kith and kin and mortal joy.
In the years since once in Ptolemy’s court,
Thine angel stayed the wav’ring of my hand,
I’ve seen the mortal curse with deadly dart,
Snatch all away: the fruit of Adam’s sin.
So my God, I’m left with only Thee;
Even as my years do increase Thou,
Remainest without change perpetually,
Vast, eternal, grand, and yet somehow,
Under Virgin’s care as gentle babe:
Maker of all creation Creature made.
There before the face of all the earth,
Under flesh assumed Thou hast come down,
Unto the Gentiles Light revealing burns,
Made to Israel’s glory and renown.
Dame, this child shall see the rise and fall,
Of many who in Israel abide,
Made a sign to be contradicted, calls,
In bitter pain from gibbet as He dies.
No heart shall be pierced as thine by sword:
Endured that the thoughts of many be revealed.
Painting: Anonymous follower of Juan de Borgoña – The Presentation of Christ and the Purification of the Virgin Mary in the Temple
Joe Terlisner works as an engineer and graduated from the US Merchant Marine Academy in 2016. He resides in eastern Virginia with his wife and three sons. In his spare time he writes poetry, some of which can be found at at clamores.substack.com.