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A Hymn for the Epiphany.

67

Chorus. To Thee, Thou Day of Night! Thou

East of West !
Lo, we at last have found the way
To Thee, the world's great universal

East,
The general and indifferent day.

1 King. All circling point! all-centring sphere !

The world's one round eternal year: 2 King. Whose full and all-unwrinkled face

Nor sinks nor swells with time or

place; 3 King. But everywhere and every while

Is one consistent solid smile, 1 King. Not vexed and tost, 2 King. 'Twixt spring and frost; 3 King. Nor by alternate shreds of light;

Sordidly shifting hands with shades

and night.

Chorus. O little All, in Thy embrace,

The world lies warm and likes his

place; Nor does his full globe fail to be Kissed on both his cheeks by Thee; Time is too narrow for Thy year, Nor makes the whole world Thy halfsphere.

Richard Crashaw.

A HYMN ON THE NATIVITY OF MY

SAVIOUR.

I sing the birth was born to-night,
The author both of life and light;

The angels so did sound it.
And like the ravished shepherds said,
Who saw the light, and were afraid,

Yet searched, and true they found it.

The Son of God th' eternal king,
That did us all salvation bring,

And freed the soul from danger;
He whom the whole world could not take,
The Word, which heaven and earth did make,

Was now laid in a manger.

The Father's wisdom willed it so,
The Son's obedience knew no No,

Both wills were in one stature;
And as that wisdom had decreed,
The Word was now made flesh indeed,

And took on Him our nature.

A Hymn on the Nativity of my Saviour. 69

What comfort by Him do we win,
Who made himself the price of sin,

To make us heirs of glory!
To see this babe all innocence;
A martyr born in our defence;
Can man forget the story?

Ben Jonson.

AT CHRISTMAS.

All after pleasures as I rid one day,

My horse and I both tried, body and mind,

With full cry of affections quite astray, I took

up

in the next inn I could find.

There, when I came, whom found I but my

dearMy dearest Lord; expecting till the grief

Of pleasures brought me to Him; ready there To be all passengers' most sweet relief?

O Thou, whose glorious, yet contracted light,

Wrapt in night's mantle, stole into a manger;

Since my dark soul and brutish is Thy right, To man, of all beasts, be not Thou a stranger;

Furnish and deck my soul, that Thou may'st

have A better lodging than a rock or grave.

The shepherds sing; and shall I silent be?

My God, no hymn for Thee?
My soul's a shepherd too; a flock it feeds

Of thoughts and words and deeds; The pasture is Thy word, the stream Thy grace,

Enriching every place.

At Christmas.

71

Shepherd and flock shall sing, and all my

powers

Outsing the daylight hours.
Then we will chide the sun for letting night

Take up his place and right:
We sing one common Lord; wherefore He

should

Himself the candle hold.

I will go searching till I find a sun

Shall stay till we have done;
A willing shiner, that shall shine as gladly

As frost-nipt suns look sadly,
Then we will sing and shine all our own day,

And one another pay.

His beams shall cheer my breast; and both so

twine, Till ev'n his beams sing and my music shine.

George Herbert.

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