The Battle Eve of the Brigade
Thomas Osbourne Davis
The mess-tent is full,and the glasses are set,
the gallant Count Thomond is president yet;
The vet'ran arose, like an uplifted lance, Crying -
a health to the monarch of France!"
With bumpers and cheers they have done as he bade,
For King Louis is
loved by The Irish Brigade.
"A health to King James," and they bent as
"Here's to George the Elector," and fiercely they laughed;
"Good luck to the girls we
wooed long ago,
Where Shannon, and Barrow, and Blackwater flow;"
"God prosper Old Ireland," - you'd think
So pale grew the chiefs of The Irish Brigade.
"But surely, that light cannot come from our lamp?
that noise - are they all getting drunk in the camp ?"
"Hurrah! boys, the morning of battle is come,
the generale's beating on many a drum."
So they rush from the revel to join the parade;
For the van is the
right of The Irish Brigade.
They fought as they revelled, fast, fiery, and true,
though victors, they left on the field not a few;
And they, who survived, fought and drank as of yore,
the land of their heart's hope they never saw more;
For in far foreign fields, from Dunkirk to Belgrade,
the soldiers and chiefs of The Irish Brigade.