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Tuesday 17 December 2013

W is for Wadsworth's Words

It is just one week until we celebrate Christmas Day, the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour. I decided to bring you the poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that has been arranged as a modern Christmas song called "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day."  The story behind the poem and song are extraordinary and its story continues today.  Jesus came to bring peace and love to all nations and yet we still war with each other.  There are wars between nations. There are wars between people of the same nation.  There are wars waged against children, women, and those who have different perspectives on life.  It is so sad!

As we rejoice in the company of family and friends this holiday season, partaking of sumptuous meals in our warm and cosy homes, may we remember those war weary souls who have fought and are still fighting for freedom - freedom of religion, freedom of individuality, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and association and so much more. 

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote his poem at the time of the Civil War in the USA.  He was heartbroken over the loss of his wife and the injury sustained by his son in the war.  He heard the church bells ringing on Christmas Day, yet he could not understand why we continue to wage war.  He writes:

And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;

"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;

The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,

With peace on earth, good-will to men."

This poem and song is my Christmas gift to all the ABC Wednesday contributors.  I wish you all a very Merry Christmas.


  1. A wonderful choice, Leslie - if we were only to put our energies into achieving Peace, Love and Joy how splendid it would be.

  2. Wonderful W post this week.

  3. Great "W" post Leslie, very seasonal and one of my favorite carols.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  4. Wishing all by ABCWednesday friends a very happy Holiday, with a special thank-you to the ABC Wednesday team for all your hard work, all your visits, and warm supportive comments.

  5. Wonderful song and wish you and your family a very happy Christmas!

  6. Excellent christmas song....Merry christmas to all!

  7. Roger ~ A little overwhelmed at the time, and realize that I have been very shipshodd..(is that a word) with my ABC Wednesday, finding something at the last minute, and not putting the time and effort it deserves. My blog "Got a Minute or Two" is really just my life journal, and I've decided to give it my energy. For the years that I did participate in ABC it was fun, and most of all I learned to much for all of you. I will continue when I have time to visit, but not as a participator. Thanks again for the work and effort you put into this and for all the people that find pleasure in it. Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas, and a joyful New Year.

    1. So sorry to hear you're stopping but please do participate if and when you have time. We will miss you very much!

      abcw team

  8. Mine is a celebration of Wisconsin in Winter. Wow. Woger, hope you like it, hee hee.

    I also have a grumpier one I posted today... about how Jesus is getting lost in the Christmas equation. I'm no Bible-thumper, but when Santa and commercialism take over a holiday that is supposed to remember the birth of one of the greatest pacifists who ever lived, the baby who would grow up to be respected by Jews and honored as a prophet by Muslims and a Buddah by Buddhists... well, is it asking to much to think about him a bit?

    Lots of folks get the "Christmas Blues," and there is a service in many cities and towns on the Longest Night (the Solstice) where people can go to lament whatever is making them sad... the commercialism, the loss of a loved one, the loss of a job... loss of a family who rejected a person for being LGBT, whatever the reason. So do get to one if you're able this Saturday. It won't cure your blues, but you will get some of the tears out of your system. Blessings to all, Amy

  9. Almost time for another round. Her we go with the dreaded END OF THE ALPHABET. We got this! Winter blues? We can overcome this. Thank you for always providing such great feedback to participants. My readers notice!

    1. I wholeheartedly gree with the poet of this Carol!

  10. Sadly, I'd forgotten that Wordsworth had written this. Thank you so much for the reminder. My heart can't deal with all the dreadful news broadcast daily. The Civil War was so hard whereas Jesus' words came to light with families choosing different sides of that war.

  11. Merry Christmas and thanks for dropping by, Leslie!

  12. Merrrry X-mas all !!!!!!!!!!