The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Christmas Silence

Words: Margaret Deland

Source: Christmas: Its Origin, Celebration and Significance as Related in Prose and Verse - Robert Haven Schauffler (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1907)
(Project Gutenberg eBook #18908)

Hushed are the pigeons cooing low
    On dusty rafters of the loft;
    And mild-eyed oxen, breathing soft,
Sleep on the fragrant hay below.

Dim shadows in the corner hide;
    The glimmering lantern's rays are shed
    Where one young lamb just lifts his head,
Then huddles 'gainst his mother's side.

Strange silence tingles in the air;
    Through the half-open door a bar
    Of light from one low-hanging star
Touches a baby's radiant hair.

No sound: the mother, kneeling, lays
    Her cheek against the little face.
    Oh human love! Oh heavenly grace!
'Tis yet in silence that she prays!

Ages of silence end to-night;
    Then to the long-expectant earth
    Glad angels come to greet His birth
In burst of music, love, and light!

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