Folk and Traditional Song Lyrics:
Revel

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The Revel

The Revel
(Bartholomew Dowling)

We meet 'neath the sounding rafter,
 And the walls all around are bare;
 As they shout back our peals of laughter
 It seems that the dead are there.
 Then stand to your glasses, steady!
 We drink in our comrades eyes:
 One cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

 Not here are the goblets glowing,
 Not here is the vintage sweet;
 'Tis cold as our hearts are growing,
 And dark as the doom we meet.
 But stand to your glasses, steady!
 And soon shall our pulses rise:
 A cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

 There's many a hand that's shaking,
 And many a cheek that's sunk;
 But soon, though our hearts are breaking,
 They'll burn with the wine we've drunk.
 Then stand to your glasses, steady!
 'Tis here the revival lies:
 Quaff a cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies.

 Time was when we laughed at others;
 We thought we were wiser then;
 Ha! Ha! Let them think of their mothers,
 Who hope to see them again.
 No! stand to your glasses, steady!
 The thoughtless is here the wise:
 One cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

 Not a sigh for the lot that darkles,
 Not a tear for the friends that sink-,
 We'll fall, 'midst the wine-cup's sparkles,
 As mute as the wine we drink.
 Come, stand to your glasses, steadyl!
 'Tis this that the respite buys:
 A cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

 There's a mist on the glass congealing,
 'Tis the hurricane's sultry breath;
 And thus does the warmth of feeling
 Turn ice in the grasp of Death.
 But stand to your glasses, steady!
 For a moment the vapor flies:
 Quaff a cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

 Who dreads to the dust returning?
 Who shrinks from the sable shore,
 Where the high and haughty yearning
 Of the soul can sting no more?
 No, stand to your glasses, steady!
 The world is a world of lies:
 A cup to the dead already-
 And hurrah for the next that dies!

 Cut off from the land that bore us,
 Betrayed by the land we find,
 When the brightest have gone before us,
 And the dullest are most behind-
 Stand, stand to your glasses, steady!
 'Tis all we have left to prize:
 One cup to the dead already-
 Hurrah for the next that dies!

This song was recently used during the closing credits on a TV documentary
about the Boer war.  It used to be sung by the commander of my
English Civil War regiment "The Great Steve Baker".  Anyone
who might have known him will know why I wrote his name like that.
 The above poem is supposed to have been written in India while
the plague was  playing havoc among the British residents and troops
there. It has been  attributed to Alfted Domett as well as Bartholomew Dowling.

WL
apr00
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