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Poem by Thomas Chatterton
A Hymn for Christmas Day
Almighty Framer of the Skies! O let our pure devotion rise, Like Incense in thy Sight! Wrapt in impenetrable Shade The Texture of our Souls were made Till thy Command gave light. The Sun of Glory gleam'd the Ray, Refin'd the Darkness into Day, And bid the Vapours fly; Impell'd by his eternal Love He left his Palaces above To cheer our gloomy Sky. How shall we celebrate the day, When God appeared in mortal clay, The mark of worldly scorn; When the Archangel's heavenly Lays, Attempted the Redeemer's Praise And hail'd Salvation's Morn! A Humble Form the Godhead wore, The Pains of Poverty he bore, To gaudy Pomp unknown; Tho' in a human walk he trod Still was the Man Almighty God In Glory all his own. Despis'd, oppress'd, the Godhead bears The Torments of this Vale of tears; Nor bade his Vengeance rise; He saw the Creatures he had made, Revile his Power, his Peace invade; He saw with Mercy's Eyes. How shall we celebrate his Name, Who groan'd beneath a Life of shame In all Afflictions tried! The Soul is raptured to concieve A Truth, which Being must believe, The God Eternal died. My Soul exert thy Powers, adore, Upon Devotion's plumage sar To celebrate the Day; The God from whom Creation sprung Shall animate my grateful Tongue; From him I'll catch the Lay!
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