In doleful sounds twice thrice is heard the bell,
That rings the old year’s parting knell;
Twice thrice, in lively tones now hear;
That bell all hail the coming year!
Hark! to the fiddle’s joy-inspiring call,
That echoes through the festive hall;
And see the lads and rosy lasses there,
The merry dance with transport share.
But list now to the servant’s heavy foot,
That interrupts the lively note;
And to the dance a stoppage sudden makes,
For lo! he brings the ale and cakes.
And view yon chimney nook, where flames the fire,
Where sits each sage and old grandsire;
And harken to the shouts of mirth that rise,
At rustic humour’s apt replies.
To yonder corner cast a transient glance,
And leave awhile the merry dance!
Behold wild children at their Christmas games,
Snatching sweet things from brandied flames.
Then mount on fancy’s wings to yonder rafter,
And hear the mingled peals of laughter,
And view the happy crew within the hall,
That sing, play tricks, or join the ball!
Enjoy the pleasure that the young enjoy
Pleasure they feel without alloy,
And say if e’er of happiness such store,
Came to they raptured view before.