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The mystery, ere the birth of time fore. The graves are opened, and the dead come doom'd,
forth. The Promise, hail'd afar, from age to age, The veil is rent in twain. Salvation beams By seer and prophet, beckoning into birth Upon the heathen world. Thou, in the grave The empires. · Hark! their voice which Who slept'st without corruption, thou art darkly spake
ris'n Of trouble and vicissitudes on earth,
Victor of death, Heaven opens—Thou art With change of kingdoms, clearly heralds thron'd forth
Creatur; Judge! Redeemer ! Thou art One realm, one nation, one Eternal King, thron'd Christ! Heard ye not the voice of joy, the On the right hand of God th' Eternal King! voice
He spake, and the prophetic vision clos'd, As of a host, a multitude in heaven? Glory to God on high! Peace, peace on earth!
INCARNATION, &c. OF CHRIST. Rejoice ye shepherds ! ye, who nightly keep Your flock by Bethlehem! Lo, yon star!
SPENSER. Come forth!
BEGIN from first, where he encradled was Hail the desire of nations! From the east In simple cratch, wrapt in a wad of hay, Come forth, ye Sages! for the expected birth Between the toylful oxe and humble ass, Prepare rich offerings! Worship, earth, thy | And in what rags, and in how base array, Lord,
The glory of our heavenly riches lay, A babe within the manger. Give the King When him the simple shepherds came to see, Of Glory entrance. Who goes forth in power? Whom greatest princes sought on lowest All nature hears the Omnipotent. Ye winds ! knee. Be still! Thou troubled ocean, sink to rest ! Thou sick, be heal'd! Thou lame, stand up! From thence read on the story of his life, Thou blind,
His humble carriage, his unfaulty ways, Receive thy sight! Thon, in the grave, arise! His cancred foes, his fights, his toyl, his Ye demons from the dispossest, confess
strife, God in the veil of flesh! Oh! Son of Man, His pains, his poverty, his sbarp assays, Thy word is life eternal : Thou art life. Through which he past his miserable dayes, Spare me afflicting visions! spare my sight! Offending none, and doing good to all,
burden'd with the sins of hum kind, Yet being malic'd both of great and small. What agony like thine ? Big drops of sweat Fall from thy brow, like blood. LU! angels And look at last, bow of most wretched come
wights Administ'ring! Oh, thou art mock'd, yet He taken was, betray'd, and false accused, dumb;
How with most scornful taunts, and fell Scourged, but without complaint. Ye know despights bim not.
He was revil'd, disgrac'd, and foul abused; Abraham, your father knew, and joy'd to How scourg'd, how crown'd, how buffeted, see
how brused; His day. Lo this, the only Son of God: And, lastly, how 'twixt robbers crucifide, An offering, a free ransom for mankind. With bitter wounds through hands, through I see the spotless Lamb whom God provides feet, and side! An everlasting sacrifice. 'Tis done,Justice and Mercy meet upon that cross. Then let thy flinty heart, that feels no pain, He bows his head in death. Oh heav'n, Empierced be with pitiful remorse, and earth!
And let thy bowels bleed in every vein Angel and man, bear witness of the God! At sight of his most sacred heavenly corse, Darkness above: Earth to its centre shakes. So torn and mangled with malicious force; And let thy soul, whose sins his sorrows
MILMAN. wrought, Meltinto tears, and grone in grieved thought. For thou wast born of woman! thou didst
come, With sense whereof, whilst so thy soft'ned Oh Holiest! to this world of sin and gloom, spirit
Not in thy dread omnipotent array ; Is inly toucht, and humbled with meek zeal
And not by thunders strew'd Through meditation of his endless merit,
Was thy tempestuous road; Lift up thy mind to th' Author of thy weal, Nor indignation burnt before thee on thy And to his soveraign mercy do appeal;
way. Learn him to love that loved thee so dear, But thee, a soft and naked child, And in thy breast his blessed image bear. Thy mother undefiled,
In the rade manger laid to rest With all thy heart, with all thy soul and From off her virgin breast.
Thou must him love, and bis beheasts embrace;
The heavens were not commanded to preAll other loves, with which the world doth
A gorgeous canopy of golden air; Weak fancies, and stir up affections base, Nor stoop'd their lamps th' enthroned fires Thou must renownce and utterly displace,
on high : And give thyself unto him full and free,
A single, silent star
Gliding uncheck'd and calm along the liquid Then shalt thou feel thy spirit so possest,
sky; And ravisht with devouring great desire
The Eastern Sages leading on
Before thy infant feet.
Bright harmony from every starry sphere;
Nor at thy presence brake the voice of song Thenceforth all world's desire will in thee
From all the cherub quires, die,
And seraphs' burning lyres And all earth's glory, on which men do gaze,
Pour'd thro' the host of heaven the charmed Seem dirt and dross in thy pare-sighted eye,
clouds along. Compar'd to that celestial beauty's blaze,
One angel troop the strain began, Whose glorious beams all fleshly sense doth
Of all the race of man daze
By simple shepherds heard alone, With admiration of their passing light,
That soft hosanna's tone. Blinding the eyes, and lumining the spright.
Then shall thy ravisht soul inspired be And when thou didst depart, no car of flame With heavenly thoughts, far above human To bear thee bence in lambent radiance skill,
came; And thy bright radient eyes shall plainly see Nor visible angels mourn’d with drooping Th’ idee of his pure glory present still
plumes. Before thy face, that all thy spirits shall fill Nor didst thou mount on high With sweet enragement of celestial love,
From fatal Calvary Kindled through sight of those fair things with all thine own redeem'd out-bursting above.
from their tombs.
For thou didst bear away from earth The winds, with wonder whist,
Smoothly the waters kist,
Who now hath quite furgot to rave,
While birds of calm sit brooding on the Nor o'er thy cross the clouds of vengeance
charmed wave. brake; A little while the conscious earth did shake The stars with deep amaze, At that foul deed by her fierce children done; Stand fix'd in stedfast gaze, A few dim honrs of day
Bending one way their precious influence ; The world in darkness lay ;
And will not take their flight, Then bask'd in bright repose beneath the For all the morning light, cloudless sun :
Or Lucifer that often warn’d them thence; While thou didst sleep beneath the tomb, But in their glimmering orbs did glow, Consenting to thy doom ;
Until the Lord himself bespake, and bid Ere yet the white-rob'd angel shone
them go. Upon the sealed stone.
And, though the shady gloom And when thou didst arise, thou didst not
Had given day her room, stand
The sun himself withheld his wonted speed, With devastation in thy red right hand,
And hid his head for shame,
As his inferior flame
The new-enlighten'd world no more should Thy mother's coming feet,
need : And bear the words of peace unto the faith
He saw a greater sun appear ful few.
Than his bright throne, or burning axletree, Then calmly, slowly, didst ibon rise
The shepherds on the lawn,
Sat simply chatting in a rustic row;
That the mighty Pan
Was kindly come to live with them below;
Perhaps their loves, or else their sheep, MILTON.
Was all that did their silly thoughts so busy No war, or battle's sound,
keep. Was heard the world around: The idle spear and shield were bigh up
hung; The hooked chariot stood Unstain'd with hostile blood;
CARRINGTON. The trumpet spake not to the armed throng:
"Twas not the moon in glory streaming, And kings sat still with awful eye,
As she swam forth from cloud concealing; As if they surely knew their sovereign Lord It was not meteor glance, nor lightning, was by.
The gorgeous concave instant bright’ning,
That rushing on the shepherd's eye, But peaceful was the night,
Illumin'd heaven's vast canopy ! Wherein the Prince of Light
But, sailing down the radiant sky, His reign of peace upon the earth began : From bowers of bliss, from worlds on high
Appear'd, upborne on wings of fire, A seraph host-an angel quire !
The shepherds, on his natal morn,
It came—that glorious embassy, To hail the Incarnate Mystery! For this awoke the extatic hymn, From glowing lips of seraphim ! Ne'er flow'd such strains on earthly gale, O'er breezy hill, or list’ning vale, Before ; nor shall such sounds again Break on the raptur'd ear of man, Till, rising to his native sky, He put on Immortality.
H, K. WHITB.
For this, too, flam'd o'er Bethlehem, The brightest in night's diadem, That herald star whose pilot ray Illum'd the magi's doubtful way; Bright wanderer through the fields of air, Which led the enquiring sages where, Cradled within a worthless manger, Slept on that morn the immortal stranger.
Yet once more, and once more, awake, my
harp, From silence and neglect-one lofty strain ; Lofty, yet wilder than the winds of Heaven, And speaking mysteries, more than words
can tell, I ask of thee; for I, with hymnings high, Would join the dirge of the departing year. Yet with no wintry garland from the woods, Wrought of the leafless branch, or ivy sear, Wreathe I thy tresses, dark December! now; Me higher quarrel calls, with loudest song, And tearful joy, to celebrate the day Of the Redeemer.--Near two thousand suns Have set their seals upon the rolling lapse Of generations, since the day-spring first Beamed from on high !-Now to the mighty
He might have come in regal pomp, With pealing of archangel trump,An angel blast as loud and dread; As that which shall awake the dead ! His lightning might have scar'd the night, Streaming insufferable light; His thunder, deep'ning, peal on peal, Have made earth to her centre reel, Deep voices such as shook with fear, At Sinai's base, the favour'd seer; The wing of whirlwind might have borne
The trampling earthquake gone before him :
Of that increasing aggregate, we add
wrong Forcing the scanty portion from the weak, And steeping the lone widow's couch with
tears. So has the year been character'd with wo In Christian land, and mark'd with wrongs
and crimes; Yet 'twas not thus He taught-not thus He
liv'd, Whose birth we this day celebrate with prayer,
He came not thus, no earthquake shock Shiver'd the everlasting rock ; No trumpet blast, nor thunder peal, Made earth through all her regions reel; And but for the mysterious voicing Of that unearthly quire rejoicing: And but for that strange herald gem, The star which burn'd o'er Bethlehem,
And much thanksgiving.--He, a man of His persecutors—"Father, pardon them, woes,
They know not what they do.” Went on the way appointed,--path, though rude,
Angels of Heaven Yet borne with patience still:-He came Ye who beheld him fainting on the cross to cheer
And did him homage, say, may mortal join The broken-hearted, to raise up the sick, The hallelujahs of the risen God? And on the wandering and benighted mind
Will the faint voice and grovelling song be light of truth.-0 task divine ! heard () more than angel teacher! He had words Amid the seraphim in light divine ? To soothe the barking waves, and hush the Yes, he will deign, the Prince of Peace will winds;
deign, And when the soul was toss'd in troubled For mercy, to accept the hymn of faith, seas,
Low though it be and humble.—Lord of Wrapt in thick darkness and the howling life, storm,
The Christ, the Comforter, thine advent He, pointing to the star of peace on high, now, Arm'd it with holy fortitude, and bade it Fills my uprising soul.-I mount, I fly smile
Far o'er the skies, beyond the rolling orbs; At the surrounding wreck.
The bonds of flesh dissolve, and earth reWhen with deep agony his heart was rack’d, cedes, Not for himself the tear-drop dew'd his And care, and pain, and sorrow are no cheek,
more. For them He wept, for them to Heaven He
Deep in Sabea’s fragrant groves retired,
Long had they trained the enquiring youth,
Derived from Egypt's elder race!
And all Arabia's glowing store
Stars, plants and gems, and talismans they knew,
The admiring East their praises spread :
Mourning they sat with dust upon their head,
The fond complaint renewed,