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The oxen in their stalls are still,
Whilst angels gather round,
Is seated on the ground.
Is shining in her eyes,
From her arms, in which He lies.
O blessed mother, in thy love
All peerless and all fair !
In that stable cold and bare :
The manger is the throne
And yet thy Babe, thine own.
O mother, what a joy thou art !
For thou art full of grace,
And smilest in His face ;
And as He smiles in thine,
Around thee flash and shine ;
Thee for their empress own, Because Eternal God hath made
Thy sinless arms His throne.
The Christmas light is shining,
Though eighteen centuries Have fled, since that first joyful night
That saw thee on thy knees
Wherein thy Jesus lay,
And the oxen eating hay.
I cannot tell thee half the joy
With which our eyes grow dim, When we kneel beside the manger,
And thou bringest us to Him, Who is thy loving spouse, and ours,
Our life, our changeless joy, Thine own dear sweetest Jesus,
Thy wondrous, beauteous boy.
The Christmas light is shining,
As bright as ever now,
And the light on Mary's brow.
The prostrate crowds adore,
Upon the Temple’s floor :
To worship Jesus there, And swiftly rises up to Him
The voice of heart-felt prayer.
And voice on voice is thrilling,
Till the mighty chaunt ascends,
In sweetest concert blends.
Are faint with loving joy,
And time cannot destroy.
O mother, keep us at thy side,
Lest we should fall away, And reach not thee and Jesus,
In the cloudless, sunlit day. Be with us in this stormy sea,
And bring us to the shore,
Is seen for evermore.
And where death can never come,
The pilgrim's happy home ;
In blessed Christmas light,
And the day is ever bright.
TO THE MEMORY OF BISHOP MAGINN. A STAR hath vanish'd from our nether sphere,
A glory from our darksome earth is fled ; Our grief is half astonishment-half awe,
And all the mourning soul is fill'd with dread. Oh, strange it seems that such as he should die
Die to that world whose darkness he illuminedDie with his glorious genius half reveal'd!
Oh earth -oh man !-how darkly are ye doom'd !
Weep, Erin ! weep. One other blow is struck;
A link is added to thy chain of woe.
For him, thy patriot-prelate, now laid low.
And reard his towering mind in thy defence, Till even thy foul maligners back recoild :
Weep for the trusty champion taken hence.
And thou, our holiest Mother, Church of God!
Deplore the stately column rent away ! Mourn genius, learning, piety, and zeal
Assemblage rare in “ tenement of clay.”
Thine was the charity that warm’d his heart,
And thine the faith sublime which fill’d his soul. Meet son of such a mother—he is dead;
What now can thy maternal heart console !
What though thy circling arm him still enfold,
Where stands his radiant soul before the throne, 'Mid thy triumphant warriors, brightly crown'd
Yet mournest thou the light from this world gone ; Thou sorrow'st for thy children thus bereaved
The bright example from our view removed, A radiance from this world of sin withdrawn.
So mourns thy mother-oh! thou most beloved !
For thee, my country! raise thy sorrowing eyes
To those far regions, where he “lives and reigns," Believe that still he loves and serves thee there
Prays for thy weal, compassionates thy pains. Though stripp'd of this world's wealth, thou still art rich;
Rich in the saints thou daily giv’st to heaven ; Rich in the heritage of thine old faith,
Purely divine, and free from earthly leaven !
From forth thy bills and vales, how many a star
Hath shone upon the darkness of the earth, Guiding the nations with the light of faith
A blessing to the land that gave them birth ! Thou art not poor, loved island of our sires ;
Rich in thy children we behold thee stand ; Hadst thou but borne a Doyle and a Maginn, The world would deem thee rich, mine honour'd