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Christmas in Legend and Story by  Elva S. Smith
Table of Contents

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NEIGHBORS OF THE CHRIST NIGHT

NORA ARCHIBALD SMITH

[22]

Deep in the shelter of the cave,

The ass with drooping head

Stood weary in the shadow, where

His master's hand had led.

About the manger oxen lay,

Bending a wide-eyed gaze

Upon the little new-born Babe,

Half worship, half amaze.

High in the roof the doves were set,

And cooed there, soft and mild,

Yet not so sweet as, in the hay,

The Mother to her Child.

The gentle cows breathed fragrant breath

To keep Babe Jesus warm,

While loud and clear, o'er hill and dale,

The cocks crowed, "Christ is born!"

Out in the fields, beneath the stars,

The young lambs sleeping lay,

[23]

And dreamed that in the manger slept

Another, white as they.


These were Thy neighbors, Christmas Child;

To Thee their love was given,

For in Thy baby face there shone

The wonder-light of Heaven.


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