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The Old, Old Story.

47

THE OLD, OLD STORY.

Listen, Lordings, unto me, a tale I will you

tell, Which, as on this night of glee, in David's town

befell. Joseph came from Nazareth, with Mary that

sweet maid ; Weary were they, nigh to death; and for a

lodging pray'd.
Sing high, sing high, sing low, sing low,
Sing high, sing low, sing to and fro,

Go tell it out with speed,
Cry out and shout all round about,
That Christ is born indeed.

In the inn they found no room; a scanty bed

they made : Soon a Babe from Mary's womb was in the

manger laid. Forth He came as light through glass : He came

to save us all, In the stable ox and ass before their Maker fall.

Sing high, sing low, etc.

Shepherds lay afield that night, to keep the

silly sheep, Hosts of angels in their sight came down from

heaven's high steep. Tidings! tidings ! unto you : to you a Child is

born, Purer than the drops of dew, and brighter than the morn.

Sing high, sing low, etc.

Onward then the angels sped, the shepherds

onward went, God was in His manger bed, in worship low

they bent. In the morning see ye mind, my masters one

and all, At the altar Him to find who lay within the stall.

Sing high, sing low, etc.

H. R. Bramley.

A Christmas Ballad.

49

A CHRISTMAS BALLAD.

Outlanders, whence come ye last ?

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. Through what green sea and great have ye

past?

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

From far away, O masters mine,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. We come to bear you goodly wine :

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

From far away we come to you,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. To tell of great tidings strange and true:

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

News, news of the Trinity,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. And Mary and Joseph from over the sea :

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

For as we wandered far and wide,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. What hope do ye deem there should us betide ? Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor. IV. d

5

Under a bent when the night was deep,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. There lay three shepherds tending their sheep:

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

“O ye shepherds, what have ye seen,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. To slay your sorrow and heal your teen ?"

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

“In an ox-stall this night we saw,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. A Babe and a maid without a flaw.

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

“ There was an old man there beside,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. His hair was white, and his hood was wide.

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

“ And as we gazed this thing upon,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. Those twain knelt down to the Little One.

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

"And a marvellous song we straight did hear,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. That slew our sorrow and healed our care."

Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

A Christmas Ballad.

51

News of a fair and a marvellous thing,

The snow in the street and the wind on the door. Nowell, nowell, nowell, we sing ! Minstrels and maids, stand forth on the floor.

William Morris.

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