Like a psalm the great Hymn fills the air, and like a psalm it remains in the memory. The fire has burned low, and a soft and solemn light fills the room. Neither of us speaks while the clock strikes twelve. I look out of the window. The heavens are ablaze with light, and somewhere amid those circling constellations I know that a new star has found its place, and is shining with such a ray as never before fell from heaven to earth.
CHRISTMAS IN THE OLDEN TIME
On Christmas-eve the bells were rung;
The damsel donned her kirtle sheen;
The hall was dressed with holly green;
Forth to the wood did merry men go,
To gather in the mistletoe.
Thus opened wide the baron's hall
To vassal, tenant, serf and all;
Power laid his rod of rule aside
And ceremony doffed his pride.
The heir, with roses in his shoes,
That night might village partner choose;
The lord, underogating, share
The vulgar game of "Post and Pair."
All hailed, with uncontrolled delight,
And general voice, the happy night