It came upon a midnight clear,
that glorious song of old,
from angels bending near the earth
to touch their harps of gold:
'Peace on the earth, good will to men,
from heaven's all-gracious King!'
The world in solemn stillness lay
to hear the angels sing.
Still through the cloven skies they come
with peaceful wings unfurled;
and still their heavenly music floats
o'er all the weary world;
above its sad and lowly plains
they bend on hovering wing,
and ever o'er its Babel sounds
the blessed angels sing.
But with the woes of sin and strife
the world has suffered long;
beneath the angel strain have rolled
two thousands years of wrong;
and man, at war with man, hears not
the love song which they bring;
O hush the noise, ye men of strife,
and hear the angels sing.
For, lo! the days are hastening on,
by prophet bards foretold,
when with the ever-circling years,
comes round the age of gold,
when peace shall over all the earth
its ancient splendours fling,
and the whole world give back the song
which now the angels sing.