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In the bleak mid-winter frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak mid-winter long ago.


Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away when He comes to reign:
In the bleak mid-winter a stable-place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty
Jesus Christ.

Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim thronged the air,
But His mother
only in her maiden bliss
Worshipped the Beloved with a kiss.


What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb,
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part, –
Yet what I can I give Him, give my heart.


poem by Christina Rossetti. 1872
painting by Ivan Shishkin, 1890 

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