When first you came
You, who had been before the world was made,
We weren't expecting such a humble birth,
Despite what all the prophets had foretold.
Caesar had said that we must be enrolled
And he must be obeyed.
The porter at the
Told us he'd turned away a family.
We heard a new-born baby cry, within -
How could we possibly have understood?
And anyway, who ever heard that good
Came out of Galilee?
We saw the shepherds
Muttering something, all about a star.
They went through to the stable-yard, and some
Knelt down before the child whose cry we'd heard.
The whole thing seemed so patently absurd -
You know what shepherds are.
So when you come
Give us due warning, so that we're prepared.
We'ld rather keep on sinning, as before -
With notice, we can turn before we're spent.
But maybe we'll need practice to repent,
And that is why we're scared.