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Happy Holidays from the Daily Mail

Christmas Bells

I heard the bells on Christmas Day

Their old, familiar carols play,

    And wild and sweet

    The words repeat

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,

The belfries of all Christendom

    Had rolled along

    The unbroken song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till ringing, singing on its way,

The world revolved from night to day,

    A voice, a chime,

    A chant sublime

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth

The cannon thundered in the South,

    And with the sound

    The carols drowned

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent

The hearth-stones of a continent,

    And made forlorn

    The households born

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;

"There is no peace on earth," I said;

    "For hate is strong,

    And mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:

"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;

    The Wrong shall fail,

    The Right prevail,

With peace on earth, good-will to men."

  • American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) wrote this Christmas poem in 1864, reflecting on the hardships and tragedies of the Civil War. In 1905, the poem was set to a tune called "Waltham," composed by the English organist John Baptist Calkin. 


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