Our American Holidays - Christmas/An Ode on the Birth of Our Saviour

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An Ode on the Birth of Our Saviour
by Robert Herrick
in Our American Holidays - Christmas

AN ODE ON THE BIRTH OF OUR SAVIOUR

ROBERT HERRICK

In numbers, and but these few,
I sing thy birth, O Jesu!
Thou pretty baby, born here
With sup'rabundant scorn here;
Who for thy princely port here,
   Hadst for thy place
   Of birth, a base
Out-stable for thy court here.

Instead of neat enclosures
Of interwoven osiers,
Instead of fragrant posies
Of daffodils and roses.
Thy cradle, kingly stranger,
   As gospel tells,
   Was nothing else
But here a homely manger.

But we with silks, not crewels,
With sundry precious jewels,
And lily work will dress thee,
And, as we dispossess thee
Of clouts, we'll make a chamber,
   Sweet babe, for thee
   Of ivory,
And plaster'd round with amber.