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.

Date: 2002Composer: Jake HeggieText: Sister Helen PrejeanSong Collection: The Deepest Desire

Print vitals & song text


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!”


The Deepest Desire

(Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland and Jake Heggie)


Flesh and Stone: Songs of Jake Heggie

(Raymond Carver, Emily Dickinson, Jake Heggie, Sister Helen Prejean, Gene Scheer and Anne Sexton)

Sheet Music

The Deepest Desire

Composer(s): Jake Heggie

Song(s): 1. More is Required
2. Love
3. I Catch on Fire
4. The Deepest Desire
5. Primary Colors

Buy via Bill Holab Music

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