Listen to baritone Thomas Hampson sing this text in a setting by Kurt Weill,
accompanied by pianist Craig Rutenberg: RealAudio 2.0 (14.4)
D i r g e f o r
T w o V e t e r a n s
blankkkkThe last sunbeam
Lightly falls from the finish'd Sabbath,
On the pavement here, and there beyond it is looking,
blankkkkDown a new-made double grave.
blankkkkLo, the moon ascending,
Up from the east the silvery round moon,
Beautiful over the house-tops, ghastly, phantom moon,
blankkkkImmense and silent moon.
blankkkkI see a sad procession,
And I hear the sound of coming full-key'd bugles,
All the channels of the city streets they are flooding,
blankkkkAs with voices and with tears.
blankkkkI hear the great drums pounding,
And the small drums steady whirring
And every blow of the great convulsive drums,
blankkkkStrikes me through and through.
blankkkkFor the son is brought with the father,
(In the foremost ranks of the fierce assault they fell,
Two veterans son and father dropt together,
blankkkkAnd the double grave awaits them.)
blankkkkAnd nearer blow the bugles,
And the drums strike more convulsive,
And the daylight o'er the pavement quite has faded,
blankkkkAnd the strong dead-march enwraps me.
blankkkkIn the eastern sky up-buoying,
The sorrowful vast phantom moves illumin'd,
('Tis some mother's large transparent face,
blankkkkIn heaven brighter growing.)
blankkkkO strong dead-march you please me!
O moon immense with your silvery face you soothe me!
O my soldiers twain! O my veterans passing to burial!
blankkkkWhat I have I also give you.
blankkkkThe moon gives you light,
And the bugles and the drums give you music,
And my heart, O my soldiers, my veterans,
blankkkkMy heart gives you love.