Saturday, December 4, 2010


by Gideon Burton
after the 15th century carol

Of flowers none so precious as the rose,
whose silken petals coil a spiral flame.
She swaddles Jesus in his birthing clothes.
This rose of roses, Mary is her name.
The bud of love, as soft as baby's skin,
a universe enfolded in its grace:
the heart of Jesus, swollen wide as sin.
She holds the baby's cheek against her face.
Among us, with us, like us, blood and flesh
and child to boy to man and stilled to dust.
Perhaps as she looks East she feels that West,
her son who will be stilled by living's hush.
     As Mary rises, constant through each night;
     so Christ arising, risen, rose to light.

Photo: flickr - jon|k

There is No Rose
anonymous 15th century carol

There is no rose of such vertu as is the rose that bare Jesu.
Alleluia, alleluia.

For in this rose contein├Ęd was heaven and earth in litel space,
Res miranda, res miranda.

By that rose we may well see there be one God in persons three,
Pares forma, pares forma,

The aungels sungen the shepherds to:
Gloria in excelsis,
gloria in excelsis Deo.
Gaudeamus, gaudeamus.

Leave we all this werldly mirth, and follow we this joyful birth.
Transeamus, transeamus, transeamus.

Alleluia, res miranda, pares forma, gaudeamus,
Transeamus, transeamus, transeamus.

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