Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
A Soldier’s Life
    HOW blest the life a soldier leads,
      From town to country ranging,
    For as the halt the march succeeds,
      Our toil delights by changing.
    Though cannons roar along the field,        5
      And comrades bleed beside us,
    Our hearts are like our bayonets steel’d,
      These dangers never fright us.
Should fresh troubles come, we’ll take sword and gun,
  If the enemy attack, we’ll not heed them,        10
But prime, load, and fire, and charge as they come nigher,
  ’Twas the way our brother soldiers gained their freedom.
    Our country’s call we will obey,
      ’Tis what we take delight in;
    Although we’re snug at home to-day,        15
      To-morrow we may be fighting.
    Should foreign troops invade our land,
      We’ll welcome them on shore, sir;
    Americans they can’t withstand;
      They well knew this before, sir.        20
The drum beats alarms, we appear with our arms,
  Though the enemy advance we’ll not heed them;
We’ll march till we meet then we’ll make them retreat,
  ’Tis the way we’ll support the cause of Freedom.
    Returning home with cheerful hearts,        25
      Our friends delighted greet us:
    Presenting us with flowing bowls,
      The pretty lasses meet us:
    Their smiles, my lads, drive off dull care.
      And banish every sorrow:        30
    We’ll drink, and dance, and laugh and sing,
      And take our rest to-morrow.
Then drink round my boys, ’tis the first of our joys,
  May we have our arms and courage when we need them,
To prime, load, and fire—so we’ll raise our fame still higher,        35
  And support our Constitution and our freedom.

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