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LINES ON THE
MERMAID TAVERN

By
John Keats
February 1818


&/\&/\&

Souls of Poets dead and gone,

What Elysium have ye known,

Happy field or mossy cavern,

Choicer than the Mermaid Tavern?

Have ye tippled drink more fine

Than mine host's Canary wine?

Or are fruits of Paradise

Sweeter than those dainty pies

Of venison?  O generous food !

Drest as though bold Robin Hood

Would, with his maid Marian,

Sup and bowse from horn and can.
 

I have heard that on a day

Mine host's sign-board flew away,

Nobody knew whither, till

An astrologer's old quill

To a sheepskin gave the story,

Said he saw you in your glory,

Underneath a new-old sign

Sipping beverage divine,

And pledging with contented smack

The Mermaid in the Zodiac.
 

Souls of Poets dead and gone,

What Elysium have ye known,

Happy field or mossy cavern,

Choicer than the Mermaid Tavern?
 

&/\&/\&
 

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