Sunday, December 13, 2015

Sunday Poetry - Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day

Another medieval carol with origins in the mystery plays. It's known as a prophecy Carol as it involves Christ as a baby telling the story of his life to Mary. Sometimes only the first few verses are sung at Christmas with later verses sung during Lent & at Easter.

Here it is, in the version by John Gardner, sung by the choirs of Jesus College, Cambridge. And here's John Rutter's version, sung by the Cecilian Carolers

 Tomorrow shall be my dancing day;
I would my true love did so chance
To see the legend of my play,
To call my true love to my dance;

        Sing, oh! my love, oh! my love, my love, my love,
        This have I done for my true love

 Then was I born of a virgin pure
Of her I took fleshly substance
Thus was I knit to man's nature
To call my true love to my dance.

 In a manger laid, and wrapped I was
So very poor, this was my chance
Betwixt an ox and a silly poor ass
To call my true love to my dance.

 Then afterwards baptized I was;
The Holy Ghost on me did glance,
My Father’s voice heard from above,
To call my true love to my dance.

 Into the desert I was led,
Where I fasted without substance;
The Devil bade me make stones my bread,
To have me break my true love's dance.

 The Jews on me they made great suit,
And with me made great variance,
Because they loved darkness rather than light,
To call my true love to my dance.

 For thirty pence Judas me sold
His covetousness for to advance:
Mark whom I kiss, the same do hold!
The same is he shall lead the dance.

 Before Pilate the Jews me brought,
Where Barabbas had deliverance;
They scourged me and set me at nought,
Judged me to die to lead the dance.

 Then on the cross hanged I was,
Where a spear my heart did glance;
There issued forth both water and blood,
To call my true love to my dance.

 Then down to hell I took my way
For my true love's deliverance,
And rose again on the third day,
Up to my true love and the dance.

 Then up to heaven I did ascend,
Where now I dwell in sure substance
On the right hand of God, that man
May come unto the general dance.


  1. Love the Carol poetry theme!
    I enjoy your choices and then explore you tube for more...which is fun!

    1. YouTube is a wonderful way to lose half an hour, isn't it?