With all the little children, far and near,
God wot! to-day we'll sing a song of cheer!
To rosy lips and eyes, that know not guile,
We one and all will give back smile for smile;
And for the sake of all the small and gay
We will be children also for to-day.
Holly we'll hang, with mistletoe above!
God wot! to-day we'll sing a song of love!
And we will trip on merry heel and toe
With all the fair who lightly come and go;
We will deny the years that lie behind
And say that age is only in the mind.
And to the needy, in whatever place,
God wot! to-day we'll lend a hand of grace;
For where is he who hath not need himself,
Although he dine on silver or on delf?
And we who pass and nod this Christmas Day
May never meet again on life's highway.
But when the lights are lit, and day has flown -
God wot! there will be some who sit alone;
Who sit and gaze into the embers' glow,
And watch strange things that flitter to and fro -
The ghosts of dreams; and faces - long unseen;
Shadows of shadows - things that once have been.