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THE heralds of Christmas the happy, are heard;
In presence of winter they sing;

As cheerfully warble as warbles the bird,
That singeth the coming of Spring.

And fingers of glory are fringing the night,
With a border of morning gold;

And visions of angels are rising in light,
Far over the mountains of old.

But what of the dawn in the distant deep-
That holy handwriting of rays ?
And what of the vision that mounts the steep?
And what of the anthem of praise?

There's life in the light of the mounting dawn;
Delight in the look of the sign;

The promise of pleasure and peace unknown;
Of grace and of glory divine!

The heralds of Christmas in music are heard,
Are heard in the singers who sing;
They cheerfully warble as warbles the bird,
That heralds the beauty of Spring.

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ONE is going with its joyfulness and sorrow,—
Disappearing in the darkness of the night;
And another will be with us on the morrow,
With divinings and designings of delight:
For, though cloudiness be o'er us,
Days of beauty are before us,

Calm and clear;
Then we 'll sing a farewell measure
To the Old Year; and, with pleasure,
Welcome, as we would a treasure,
The New Year.

One is going, yea, for ever, and for ever; As the daylight disappeareth from the land; And another, with the motion of a river, And the silence of a shadow, is at hand: Coming unto all the living, Taking life away and giving, Far and near;

Still we sing a farewell measure
To the Old Year; and, with pleasure,
Welcome, as a trust and treasure,

The New Year.

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One is going like the writing of a record,
Or a photographic volume, full and vast ;
That, a transcript of the nations, strangely chequer'd;
This, a picture, true and faithful, of the past:

Swiftly through surrounding star-land,
With the blood-red words of war-land,
Sword and spear;

With the pictures of the tearful,
And of those who soothed the fearful,
And of God-like hearts and cheerful,
Goes the Year.

One is coming like the marching of the morning,
As a minister of heaven to the lands;
There are rounds of rosy rays his brow adorning;
There are overtures of blessing in his hands:
“If,” saith he, “ye truly would be
Heirs of glory, as ye should be,

Then, give ear;
God, for every soul that seeketh,
All the bars of bondage breaketh!"
Thus, as one who knoweth, speaketh,
The New Year.

So one goeth with its pleasure and its sorrow—
Disappeareth in the darkness of the night;
And another will be present on the morrow,
With its visions of improvement and delight :

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For though cloud be darkly o'er us,
Blessing beameth yet before us,
Calm and clear;
Therefore sing a solemn measure
To the Old Year; but, with pleasure,
Welcome as a worthy treasure
The New Year.


YOUTH, to the future, may indeed

Turn with a longing look;
Just as one may, who cannot read,
Gaze on a sealed book.

For what shall be in time to come,
Is not an open page;
But though prophetic voice be dumb,
Yet speaks the voice of age.

A youth in great but silent grief,
Forth wander'd he at Eve;
And cherished much the sad belief,
That man was made to grieve.

A sage, he found, of fourscore years;
Too feeble far to roam :—

'Tis no poor peace, or joy that cheers A heart,- -so nearly home.

"Yet," said the youth, "about his face, As not of ill afraid,

A happy smile of hope and grace,—
The spirit's sunshine, played!

"Beside his cottage-garden gate,
For me, so sad-so slow;
He patiently appeared to wait,
Till near him I should go."

"Cast down ?" said he, as I approach'd, In mild reproving tone;

"Has sin upon thy soul encroach'd, Thou look'st so lost and lone ?

"Will cherish'd sorrow ease the heart?
Out banish thought so vain!
Will poison'd dart improve the smart?
The cause content the pain?

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Come, search for sources of relief;
And, look thyself within;

If sin be not the source of grief,
Then grief itself is sin.

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