The Deepest Desire


"The Deepest Desire" is the third song of Jake Heggie's song cycle The Deepest Desire: Four meditations on Love. This song cycle sets the text of Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ.

The Deepest Desire
by Sister Helen Prejean

I thought I knew my heart's desire:
To love God. To be with God in heaven.
A bud unfolding; A dutiful and prayerful nun
I pleased God, I thought,
By being obedient.
It made me feel holy.

But getting to heaven takes a long time,
And dwelling far below was a Voice, calling:
"Lose yourself!"
"Lose yourself upon the deeper currents!"

Then I heard cries from the heart of the city.
"Is there life before death?"
I saw. I heard. I followed.
I made my way to prison cells.
I made my way to death chambers.
I saw. I heard. I followed.
I witnessed.

A desire for justice woke in me.
A fierce desire that will not let go.
The deepest desire.
The deepest desire of my heart.
"Come home!"
"Come home!"
"Come home!"

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