The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Vines Branching Stilly

Words: Louise Imogen Guiney (1861 - 1920)

Vines branching stilly
Shade the open door,
In the house of Zion's Lily,
Cleanly and poor.
Oh, brighter than wild laurel
The Babe bounds in her hand,
The King, who for apparel
Hath but a swaddling-band,
And sees her heavenlier smiling than stars in His command!

Soon, mystic changes
Part Him from her breast,
Yet there awhile He ranges
Gardens of rest:
Yea, she the first to ponder
Our ransom and recall,
Awhile may rock Him under
Her young curls' fall,
Against that only sinless love-loyal heart of all.

What shall inure Him
Unto the deadly dream,
When the Tetrarch shall abjure Him,
The thief blaspheme,
And scribe and soldier jostle

About the shameful tree,
And even an Apostle
Demand to touch and see?
But she hath kissed her Flower where the Wounds are to be.

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