A Letter to Santa

 

“Dear Santa: All I want for Christmas is an exquisite vintage party dress”, Photo by Tim Walker

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The True Christmas

The Nativity Play, Norman Rockwell, 1950s

 
 

So stick up ivy and the bays,
And then restore the heathen ways.
Green will remind you of the spring,
Though this great day denies the thing.
And mortifies the snow,
That very dress your lightness willearth and all
But your wild revels, and loose hall.
Could you wear flowers, and roses strow
Blushing upon your breasts’ warm
Rebuke, and wither at the ill.
The brightness of this day we owe
Not unto music, masque, nor show:
Nor gallant furniture, nor plate;
But to the manger’s mean estate.
His life while here, as well as birth,
Was but a check to pomp and mirth;
And all man’s greatness you may see
Condemned by His humility.
Then leave your open house and noise,
To welcome Him with holy joys,
And the poor shepherd’s watchfulness:
Whom light and hymns from heaven did bless.
What you abound with, cast abroad
To those that want, and ease your load.
Who empties thus, will bring more in;
But riot is both loss and sin.
Dress finely what comes not in sight,
And then you keep your Christmas right.

Henry Vaughan

(1678)

When We Cease To Be Curious

“Commonplaces never become tiresome. It is we who become tired when we cease to be curious and appreciative. We find that it is not a new scene which is needed, but a new viewpoint.”

Norman Rockwell

 
 

The Discovery, Norman Rockwell. Cover illustration for The Saturday Evening Post, December 29, 1956

Rockwell painted more than 30 Christmas themed covers for the Post in the course of his career and more than 70 of his most famous works address Christmas themes

From Our Happy Home

Merry Christmas Grandma … We Came in Our New Plymouth!, Norman Rockwell, 1950

 
 

From our happy home
Through the world we roam
One week in all the year,
Making winter spring
With the joy we bring,
For Christmas-tide is here.

Now the eastern star
Shines from afar
To light the poorest home;
Hearts warmer grow,
Gifts freely flow,
For Christmas-tide has come.

Now gay trees rise
Before young eyes,
Abloom with tempting cheer;
Blithe voices sing,
And blithe bells ring,
For Christmas-tide is here.

Oh, happy chime,
Oh, blessed time,
That draws us all so near!
‘Welcome, dear day,’
All creatures say,
For Christmas-tide is here.

Louisa May Alcott