Good King Wenceslas

Tis the season to get mushy….

Nah, seriously, I’ll use my last Sunday ramble before Christmas to share with you what has become my favourite carol over the years.  It’s theme ties in nicely with that of this blog.

Once you get a grip on all the hithers and thithers of the posh English-speak, these lyrics tell a story which I feel encapsulates what Christmas is meant to be about, in fact never mind Christmas, humanity itself.

In a simple tale we find three characters – a rich man, his page, and a poor man.  Three human beings, equal in flesh, anything but in status.  For this story the rich man appreciates the need to assist the other two…if only more could behave like GKW the world would be a much better place.

As a bonus, though I don’t profess an ability to sing to any kind of standard, I have added a rendition.  Sorry about the British-ness of the accent, I just can’t justify delivering those lyrics any other way.

Have an extremely happy holiday season and a prosperous new year and thanks for stopping by my humble corner of the blogosphere. JLP


Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gath’ring winter fuel

“Hither, page, and stand by me
If thou know’st it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?”
“Sire, he lives a good league hence
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes’ fountain.”

“Bring me flesh and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I will see him dine
When we bear him thither.”
Page and monarch forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude wind’s wild lament
And the bitter weather

“Sire, the night is darker now
And the wind blows stronger
Fails my heart, I know not how,
I can go no longer.”
“Mark my footsteps, my good page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shalt find the winter’s rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly.”

In his master’s steps he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing

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