As fades the iris after rain
In April's tearful weather,
The vision vanished, as the strain
And daylight died together.
But memory, waked by music's art,
Expressed in simplest numbers,
Subdued the sternest Yankee's heart,
Made light the Rebel's slumbers.
And fair the form of music shines,
That bright, celestial creature,
Who still, 'mid war's embattled lines,
Gave this one touch of Nature.
The pride of battery BThe historical setting of this popular recitation is the close of the first day's battle at Antietam, or Sharpsburg, September 16, 1862. to locate it more accurately is impossible, for it is in no sense a military record.
South Mountain towered on our right,
Far off the river lay,
And over on the wooded height
We held their lines at bay.
At last the mutt'ring guns were stilled,
The day died slow and wan.
At last their pipes the gunners filled,
The Sergeant's yarns began.
When,—as the wind a moment blew
Aside the fragrant flood
Our brierwoods raised,—within our view
A little maiden stood.
A tiny tot of six or seven,
From fireside fresh she seemed.
(Of such a little one in heaven
One soldier often dreamed.)