CAROL - Written in 1946
Flocks feed by darkness with
a noise of whispers,
In the dry grass of pastures,
And lull the solemn night with their weak bells.
The little towns upon the
Look down as meek as children:
Because they have seen come this holy time.
God's glory, now, is kindled
gentler than low candlelight
Under the rafters of a barn:
Eternal Peace is sleeping in the hay,
And Wisdom's born in secret in a straw-roofed stable.
And O! Make holy music in the
stars, you happy angels.
You shepherds, gather on the hill.
Look up, you timid flocks, where the three kings
Are coming through the wintry trees;
While we unnumbered children
of the wicked centuries
Come after with our penances and prayers,
And lay them down in the sweet-smelling hay
Beside the wise men's golden jars.
Thomas Merton (1915 - 1968)