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Of Cynthia's seat, the airy region thrilling, Mercy will sit between,
Now was almost won

Throned in celestial sheen,
To think her part was done,

With radiant feet the tissued clouds down And that her reign had here its last fulfilling;

steering, She knew such harmony alone

And Heaven, as at some festival, Could hold all Heaven and Earth in happier Will open wide the gates of her high palace union.

hall. At last surrounds their sight

But wisest fate says No,
A globe of circular light,

This must not yet be so;
That with long beams the shame-faced night The babe yet lies in smiling infancy,

That on the bitter cross
The helmed Cherubim

Must redeem our loss, And sworded Seraphim

So both himself and us to glorify; Are seen in glittering ranks with wings dis

Yet first, to those enchained in sleep, played,

The wakeful trump of doom must thunder Harping in loud and solemn choir,

through the deep. With unexpressive notes, to Heaven's newborn Heir.

With such a horrid clang

As on Mount Sinai rang,

While the red fire and smoldering clouds outSuch music, as 'tis said,

break, Never before was made,

The aged earth aghast But when of old the sons of morning sung,

With terror of that blast, While the Creator great

Shall from the surface to the center shake, His constellation set,

When at the world's last session, And the well-balanced world on hinges hung,

The dreadful Judge in middle air shall And cast the dark foundations deep,

spread his throne. And bid the weltering waves their oozy channel keep.

And then at last our bliss

Full and perfect is, Ring out, ye crystal spheres,

But now begins; for from this happy day Once bless our human ears,

The old dragon under ground If ye have power to touch our senses so;

In straighter limits bound, And let your silver chime

Not half so forecasts his usurped sway, Move in melodious time;

And, wroth to see his kingdom fail,
And let the base of Heaven's deep organ blow Swinges the scaly horror of his folded tail.

And with your nine-fold harmony
Make up full concert to the angelic sym The oracles are dumb;

No voice or hideous hum

Runs through the arched roof in words deFor if such holy song

ceiving; Enwrap our fancy long,

Apollo from his shrine Time will run back and fetch the age of gold; Can no more divine, And speckled Vanity

With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leavWill sicken and soon die,

ing; And leprous sin will melt from earthly mold, No nightly trance or breathed spell And hell itself will pass away,

Inspires the pale-eyed priest from the proAnd leave her dolorous mansions to the

phetic cell.
peering day.

The lonely mountains o'er,
Yea, Truth and Justice then

And the resounding shore
Will down return to men

A voice of weeping heard and loud lament; Orbed in a rainbow; and, like glories wear From haunted spring aud dale, ing,

Edged with poplar pale,

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Nor can he be at rest

'Twas in the calm and silent night, Within his sacred chest;

The senator of haughty Rome, Naught but profoundest Hell can be his Impatient, urged his chariot's flight, shroud;

From lordly revel rolling home;
In vain with timbreled anthem dark, Triumphal arches, gleaming, swell
The sable-stoled sorcerers bear his wor His breast with thoughts of boundless sway;
shipped ark.

What recked the Roman what befell
A paltry province far away,

In the solemn midnight,
He feels from Judah's land

Centuries ago ?
The dreaded Infant's hand
The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyne; Within that province far away

Nor all the gods beside
Longer dare abide,

Went plodding home a weary boor;
Nor Typhon, huge, ending in snaky twine;

A streak of light before him lay, Our Babe, to show his Godhead true,

Fallen through a half-shut stable-door Can in his swaddling bands control the Across his path. He passed, for naught damned crew.

Told what was going on within ;
How keen the stars, his only thought,

The air, how calm and cold and thin,
So when the sun in bed,

In the solemn midnight
Curtained with cloudy red,

Centuries ago.
Pillows his chin upon an orient wave,
The flocking shadows pale

strange indifference! low and high Troop to the infernal jail,

Drowsed over common joys and cares; Each fettered ghost slips to his several grave; The earth was still, but knew not why, And the yellow-skirted fays

The world was listening unawares. Fly after the night-steeds, leaving their low calm a moment may precede moon-loved maze.

One that shall thrill the world forever:

To that still moment none would heed But see, the Virgin blest

Man's doom was linked no more to sever. Hath laid her Babe to rest;

In the solemn midnight, Time is, our tedious song should here have

Centuries ago. ending; Heaven's youngest-teemed star

It is the calm and silent night! Hath fixed her polished car,

A thousand bells ring out and throw Her sleeping Lord with handmaid lamp at- Their joyous peals abroad, and smite tending;

The darkness, charmed and holy now! And all about the courtly stable,

The night that erst no name had worn,
Bright-harnessed angels sit in order service To it a happy name is given;

For in that stable lay, new-born,
JOHN MILTON. The peaceful Prince of earth and heaven,

In the solemn mid-night,

Centuries ago.

ALFRED DOMETT. T was the calm and silent night;

COME, YE DISCONSOLATE. Had Rome been growing up to might, And now was queen of land and sea.

NOME, ye disconsolate, where'er you lanNo sound was heard of clashing wars ;

guish, Peace brooded o'er the hushed domain; Come, at God's altar, fervently kneel; Apollo, Pallas, Jove, and Mars,

Here bring your wounded hearts, here tell Held undisturbed their ancient reign

your anguish, In the solemn midnight,

Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot Centuries ago.


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the way;

Joy of the desolate, Light of the straying, “But now, beyond the things of sense,

Hope when all others die, fadeless and pure, Beyond occasions and events, Here speaks the Comforter, in God's name I know, through God's exceeding grace, saying,

Release from form and time and place. * Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot

“I listen, from no mortal tongue, cure!"

To hear the song the angels sung; Go, ask the infidel what boon he brings us,

And wait within myself to know What charm for aching hearts he can reveal The Christmas lilies bud and blow. Sweet as that heavenly promise Hope sings “ The outward symbols disappear us:

From him whose inward sight is clear; “ Earth has no sorrows that God cannot And small must be the choice of days heal!"

To him who fills them all with praise!

“Keep while you need it, brothers mine, THE MYSTIC'S CHRISTMAS.

With honest zeal your Christmas sign,

But judge not him who, every morn, LL hail!” the bells of Christmas rang, Feels in his heart the Lord Christ born!” · AK hail!" the monks at Christmas

JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER. sang; The merry monks who kept with cheer

I WOULD NOT LIVE ALWAY." The gladdest day of all their year.

(Job VII., 16.) But still apart, unmoved thereat,

WOULD not live alway; I ask not to stay A pious elder brother sat

Where storm after storm rises dark o'er Silent, in his accustomed place, With God's sweet peace upon his face. Where, seeking for rest, I but hover around,

Like the patriarch's bird, and no resting is “Why sitt'st thou thus ?” his brethren cried.

found; * It is the blessed Christmas-tide;

Where Hope, when she paints her gay bow The Christmas lights are all aglow,

in the air, The sacred lilies bud and blow.

Leaves her brilliance to fade in the night of

despair; “ Above our heads the joy-bells ring, Without the happy children sing,

And Joy's fleeting angel ne'er sheds a glad And all God's creatures hail the morn

ray, On which the holy Christ was born!

Save the gleam of the plumage that bears

him away. " Rejoice with us; no more rebuke

I would not live alway, thus fettered by sin, Our gladness with thy quiet look.” The gray monk answered ; “Keep, I pray,

Temptation without, and corruption within;

In moment of strength if I sever the chain, Even as ye list, the Lord's birthday.

Scarce the victory's mine ere l'm captive "Let heathen Yule fires flicker red

again. Where thronged refectory feasts are spread; E'en the rapture of pardon is mingled with With mystery-play and masque and mime

fears, And wait-song speed the holy time!

And my cup of thanksgiving with penitent

tears. “ The blindest faith may haply save;

The festival trump calls for jubilant songs, The Lord accepts the things we have;

But my spirit her own miserere prolongs. And reverence howso'er it strays, May find at last the shining ways.

I would not live alway; no, welcome the

tomb; “ They needs must grope who cannot see, Immortality's lamp burns there bright mid the The blade before the ear must be;

gloom ; As ye are feeling I have felt,

There too is the pillow where Christ bowed And where ye dwelt I too have dwelt.

his head;

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