My friend Mary Jo gave me a beautiful book of Christmas poems, and I’d love to share three of them this morning. Whatever else the day holds for you, I hope you find a moment of peace and stillness in your heart.
~William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
Now as at all times I can see in the mind’s eye,
In their stiff, painted clothes, the pale unsatisfied ones
Appear and disappear in the blue depth of the sky
With all their ancient faces like rain-beaten stones,
And all their helms of silver hovering side by side,
And all their eyes still fixed, hoping to find once more,
Being by Calvary’s turbulence unsatisfied,
The uncontrollable mystery on the bestial floor.
* * *
~Thomas Hardy (1840 – 1928)
Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock,
“Now they are all on their knees,”
An elder said as we sat in a flock
By the embers in hearthside ease.
We pictured the meek mild creatures where
They dwelt in their strawy pen,
Nor did it occur to one of us there
To doubt they were kneeling then.
So fair a fancy few would weave
In these years! Yet, I feel,
If someone said on Christmas Eve,
“Come; see the oxen kneel
“In the lonely barton by yonder coomb
Our childhood used to know,”
I should go with him in the gloom,
Hoping it might be so.
* * *
From Rorate Celi Desuper
~William Dunbar (c.1460 – c.1515)
Rorate celi desuper! (1)
Ye Heavens distil your balmy shouris
For now is risen the bright day star
Fae the rose Mary, flour of flouris;
The clear Son, whom no cloud devouris,
Surmounting Phoebus in the east,
Is comen of his heavenly touris;
Et nobis Puer Natus est (2)
Celestial fowlis in the air
Sing wi’ your notis upon hight
In firthis and in Forestis fair
Be mirthful now, at all your might
For passit is your dully night;
Aurora has the cloudis pierc’d,
The sun is risen with gladsome light,
Et nobis Puer Natus est
Sing heaven imperial, most of hight
Regions of air mak harmony;
A’ fish in flood and fowl of flight
Be mirthful and mak melody:
All Gloria In Excelsis cry,
Heaven, erd, sea, man, bird, and beast,
He that is crownit abune the sky
Pro nobis Puer Natus est
(1) Drop down ye heavens from above
(2) Unto us a son is born
shouris ~ showers
Fae ~ from
flour ~ flower
touris ~ towers
firthis ~ firths
A’ ~ all
erd ~ earth
abune ~ above
* * *
* * *
Coming soon: Top 10 Cozy Reads for Winter, to be published at Styleblueprint on December 29.
Coming even sooner:
A beautiful start to this day. Merry Christmas, Jennifer!
Merry Christmas, dear Don!! Xoxo
Merry Christmas! Thank you for sharing these poems, and for all your posts through the year. They truly bring joy to your readers.
How kind, Donna. Sending very warmest wishes to you and yours. Xoxo
My day is made! Thank you for sharing these words to begin Christmas Day. Your generosity is a treasure.
And your friendship is a treasure, dear Louise. Xoxo
What a wonderful start to Christmas Day!
Thank you, dear Caroline! Merry Christmas! Xoxo
Merry Christmas, Jennifer. It is so good to be reading Bacon again as I sip my morning coffee
I am thinking of you and Beth this morning! Sending Christmas love and hopes for peace and joy and a trip to NYC to meet baby Franny very soon!! Xoxo
Thank you, dear Jennifer. We are hoping to come home tomorrow to the lacy beauty of bare limbs traced against a winter sky, and even to a couple of camellia bushes that have been nursed and fertilized and watched carefully all fall. You remind us of how beautiful Christmas is!
It is wonderful to hear your voice Lynn! Safe travels home. The camellias eagerly await; they love to share their glory. Xoxo
I’ve missed you! I hope this is just one of many tastes of bacon to come…
I finally take pleasure in the written word again, and take pleasure in community. It felt so good to share these poems today. Yes back… and thank you, Nancy… xoxo
A Christmas gift – the return of Bacon.
Hi, John!! Sending much love to you and Allison, and your beautiful children and grandchildren!! I am so happy to hear from you this morning. Xoxo
I’m among the many who’ve missed you so very much! Thank you for sharing lovely poems and yourself this Christmas morning!!! OXO
I am so grateful and happy to hear from you, Kaaren!! It sounds a little strange to say it this way – but thank you for missing Bacon. I look forward to seeing you in the new year!! Xoxo
Merry Christmas Jennifer & family!
These were the perfect start to this wondrous day.. I’m so happy you’re BAAACK.
Merry Christmas, Barbara! I’m so glad you enjoyed these poems. Very warmest wishes to you and yours as well. Xoxo
Thank you for sharing! Just perfect! ❤️ Merry Christmas Jennifer!
Thank you, Darlene! Merry Christmas to you and Rachael and your family and darling pups too!! Xoxo
Beautiful words on this day of hope. Merry Christmas to the Puryears, some of my favorite blessings!
What a blessing to hear from you, Amanda!! Thank you!! Xoxo
It’s a Christmas miracle…BACON IS BACK ON THE MENU!!!! Second helpings, please! much love to you, Jennifer ♥️
Thank you for the poems, Mary Jo… I loved them so much (and you). Xoxo
Took me a minute to get the quiet time. Love this and love you. Thank bees were all over the camellias! Xoxo
I’m glad you found your quiet moment, Lawrence… so glad… and yes I’ve seen many bees sipping camellia nectar! It’s strange to see them out this time of year! Sending much honey love to you and yours… xoxo
Oh goodness – what a gift. You’re back. I am among the many who have so sorely missed your voice. Merry Christmas, Jennifer.
Your kind words mean so much to me, Harriet. Thank you, beyond measure. Xoxo
Merry Christmas, Jen! Thank you for these joyful words and beautiful thoughts.
Merry Christmas, dear Lyn! Is that a new photo? You look beautiful!! Thank you for being in touch. I love sharing a love of words with you for all these years. Xoxo
Oh joy! Thank you, dear Jennifer, for gifting us all with your intriguing, insightful, and thought-provoking Bacon posts!
Your lovely pictures are gifts as well.
Now the fresh new year will be extra bright~
You are so lovely, dear Helen! Sending very warmest wishes for the new year! Xoxo
Thank you for sharing these lovely Christmas poems from the past. Reading them at Christmas inspires much promise for the future. I’ve missed you and the good writing on Bacon
Thank you very much for being in touch, Etta! I do love these poems from the past, so much, and love how they reach into the future. Xoxo
Jennifer these are a lovely and thoughtful addition to my day. Thank you so very much for sharing them, wishing you all the best for 2022
Wishing you all the best as well, Beth! I’m so glad you enjoyed them. Xoxo
Merry Christmas and thank you for sharing this gift.
Merry Christmas to you as well, dear Patricia! I have missed you. Xoxo
Thank you for such a serene picture of Christmas you have painted for us Jennifer ❤️
Love you, Marina – xoxo