Five Christmas Poems by George MacDonald


Babe Jesus lay in Mary's lap,
The sun shone in his hair;
And this was how she saw, mayhap,
The crown already there.

For she sang: 'Sleep on, my little king;
Bad Herod dares not come;
Before thee sleeping, holy thing,
The wild winds would be dumb.'

'I kiss thy hands, I kiss thy feet,
My child, so long desired;
Thy hands will never be soiled, my sweet;
Thy feet will never be tired.'

'For thou art the king of men, my son;
Thy crown I see it plain!
And men shall worship thee, every one,
And cry, Glory! Amen!'

Babe Jesus he opened his eyes wide-
At Mary looked her lord.
Mother Mary stinted her song and sighed;
Babe Jesus said never a word. 

I was delighted to stumble across Eric Pazdziora's wonderful setting of this poem, which you can listen to below; click on his name to go to his website.



 “Little one, who straight hast come
Down the heavenly stair,
Tell us all about your home,
And the father there.”
“He is such a one as I,
Like as like can be.
Do his will, and, by and by,
Home and him you’ll see.”



 He who by a mother’s love
     Made the wandering world his own,
Every year comes from above,
     Comes the parted to atone,
     Binding Earth to the Father’s throne.
Nay, thou comest every day!
     No, thou never didst depart!
Never hour hast been away!
     Always with us, Lord, thou art,
     Binding, binding heart to heart!


Loving looks the large-eyed cow,
Loving stares the long-eared ass
At Heaven's glory in the grass!
Child, with added human birth
Come to bring the child of earth
Glad repentance, tearful mirth,
And a seat beside the hearth
At the Father's knee—
Make us peaceful as thy cow;
Make us patient as thine ass;
Make us quiet as thou art now;
Make us strong as thou wilt be.
Make us always know and see
We are his as well as thou.



Though in my heart no Christmas glee,
Though my song-bird be dumb,
Jesus, it is enough for me
That thou art come.

What though the loved be scattered far,
Few at the board appear,
In thee, O Lord, they gathered are,
And thou art here.

And if our hearts be low with lack,
They are not therefore numb;
Not always will thy day come back--
Thyself will come!