The bird that soars on highest wing,
Builds on the ground her lowly nest;
And she that doth most sweetly sing,
Sings in the shade when all things rest:
In lark and nightingale we see
What honour hath humility.
When Mary chose the "better part,"
She meekly sat at Jesus' feet
And Lydia's gently-open'd heart
Was made for God's own temple meet;
Fairest and best adorned is she,
Whose clothing is humility.
The saint that wears heaven's brightest crown,
In deepest adoration bends;
The weight of glory bows him down,
Then most, when most his soul ascends;
Nearest the throne itself must be
The footstool of humility.
Sacred Poems and Hymns
The bird that soars on highest wing. J. Montgomery. [Humility.] This poem appeared in his Poet's Portfolio, 1835, p. 179, in 3 stanzas of 6 lines, and headed "Humility." It is given as a hymn in several collections, including Martineau's Hymns, &c, 1840; the Prim. Methodist Sunday School Union Hymn Book, 1879, and others in Great Britain and America.
-- John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)