I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

The movie I Heard the Bells is the true story behind the Christmas carol and the man who wrote it, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Longfellow was affectionately known by the public as “America’s Poet”, inspiring the country with his work. The movie takes place during the period in his life when our nation was divided by the Civil War. Happily married with six children and doing the work he loved, everything changes for him when tragedy strikes in his family. It’s an excellent movie and below is the trailer…

These are the lyrics of I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, taken from the poem Longfellow wrote in 1864:

I HEARD THE BELLS ON CHRISTMAS DAY

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along th’unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head:
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

Till, ringing, singing, on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,
Of peace on earth, good will to men!

This Christmas carol reflects the emotions Longfellow felt after experiencing profound grief. His faith was made stronger by tragedy and he writes, “God is not dead, nor doth He sleep; The wrong shall fail, the right prevail, with peace on earth, goodwill to men.” His story is inspiring and full of hope—a perfect message for this Christmas season!

Wishing you all a hopeful, joyful, peaceful Christmas!

8 thoughts on “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

  1. Chef Mimi

    Thank you for this – I had no idea about the movie. Sometimes I’m truly transfixed by lyrics of old christmas songs – no even the carols, but the more popular ones that Bing Crosby and others sang. The words are simple, but the messages and stories are beautiful. Here’s hoping you had a fabulous Christmas!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  2. Karla Messerschmidt Morgan

    Good afternoon this Boxing Day, 2022. Here are a few interesting facts about the Hymn.

    When originally written, it was titled “Christmas Bells”, and included two additional verses about “the cannons thundered in the South”, speaking of the American Civil War at the end of 1863.

    This poem was really the start of Henry’s healing after the death of his wife, Frances, when her dress caught fire in July of 1861.

    It shows us that, the last few years are not the only time our Country has been divided. I hope we come thru it as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

Comments are always appreciated!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.