C A poor orphan girl named Maria C Was walking the market one day. G She stopped for to rest by the road side G7 Where a bird with a broken wing lay. C A few moments passed till she saw it C For it's feathers were covered with sand. G And soon clean and wrapped it was traveling G In the warmth of Maria's small hand. F She happily gave her last peso C For a cage made of rushes and twine. F She fed it loose corn from the market, C And watched it grow stronger with time. C Now the gift giving service was coming, C And the church shone with tinsel and lights, G And all of the town folk brought presents, G7 To lay by the manger that night. C There were diamonds and incense and perfume C G In packages fit for a king. G But for one ragged bird in a small cage, G7 C Maria had nothing to bring. F She waited till just before midnight, C So no one would see her go in. F And crying she knelt be the manger, C For her gift was unworthy of him. D Then a voice spoke to her through the darkness: D A "Maria what brings you to me? A If the bird in the cage is your offering, A7 D Then open the door let me see." D So she trembled and did as he asked her D And out of the cage the bird flew, A Soaring up into the rafters A7 On a wing that had healed good as new. G And just as the midnight bells rang out, D The little bird started to sing G A song that no words could recapture, D For it's beauty was fit for a king. D Now Maria felt blessed just to listen D To the cascade of notes sweet and long A As her offering was lifted to heaven, A7 By the very first nightingale's song.