24 December (Christmas Eve) - Child of the Stable's Secret Birth

Yesterday - Up - Tomorrow

Those of you who've listened to my advent calendar before might recognise this carol from a previous year's iteration. I first heard it on an Oxford University Press demo CD, and was instantly taken with the melody and structure, so I thought I'd cheekily include it.

Well, joke's on me, because I ended up buying the sheet music. It's written as a flexible carol, and I've taken full advantage of that fact here, producing it with two alto and two baritone parts with MIDI pseudo-piano accompaniment.

Music: Thomas Hewitt Jones
Words: Timothy Dudley-Smith
Musician: Tony Evershed

(Well...I actually finished that yesterday evening, and am in two minds as to whether or not it's better than the baritone-only version I recorded a few weeks ago, so if you'd like to hear the baritone-only version as well, here it is...)

Child of the stable's secret birth,
The Lord by right of the lords of earth,
Let angels sing of a King new-born
The world is weaving a crown of thorn:
A crown of thorn for that infant head
Cradled soft in the manger bed.

Eyes that shine in the lantern's ray;
A face so small in its nest of hay
Face of a Child who is born to scan
The world of men through the eyes of man:
And from that face in the final day
Earth and heaven shall flee away.

Voice that rang through the courts on high
Contracted now to a wordless cry,
A voice to master the wind and wave,
The human heart and the hungry grave:
The voice of God through the cedar trees
Rolling forth as the sound of seas.

Child of the stable's secret birth,
The Father's gift to a wayward earth,
To drain the cup in a few short years
Of all our sorrows, our sins and tears -
Ours the prize for the road he trod:
Risen with Christ; at peace with God.