A Thousand Years Have Come and Gone

A thousand years have come and gone, and near a thousand more,
Since happier light from heaven shone than ever shone before:
And in the hearts of old and young a joy most joyful stirred.
That sent such news from tongue to tongue as ears had never heard.

Then angels on their starry way felt bliss unfelt before,
For news that men should be as they to darkened earth they bore;
So toiling men and spirits bright a first communion had,
And in meek mercy’s rising light were each exceeding glad.

And we are glad, and we will sing, as in the days of yore;
Come all, and hearts made ready bring, to welcome back once more
The day when first on wintry earth a summer change began,
And, dawning in a lowly birth uprose the Light of man.

For trouble such as men must bear from childhood to fourscore,
He shared with us, that we might share His joy forevermore;
And twice a thousand years of grief of conflict, and of sin,
May tell how large the harvest sheaf His patient Love shall win.

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