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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Asia: Vols. XXI–XXIII. 1876–79.

Syria: Bethlehem

Song of the Angels

By Edmund Hamilton Sears (1810–1876)

CALM on the listening ear of night

Come Heaven’s melodious strains,

Where wild Judæa stretches far

Her silver-mantled plains!

Celestial choirs, from courts above,

Shed sacred glories there;

And angels, with their sparkling lyres,

Make music on the air.

The answering hills of Palestine

Send back the glad reply;

And greet, from all their holy heights,

The dayspring from on high.

On the blue depths of Galilee

There comes a holier calm,

And Sharon waves, in solemn praise,

Her silent groves of palm.

“Glory to God!” the sounding skies

Loud with their anthems ring;

Peace to the earth, good-will to men,

From heaven’s Eternal King!

Light on thy hills, Jerusalem!

The Saviour now is born!

And bright on Bethlehem’s joyous plains

Breaks the first Christmas morn.