Mermaid Tavern

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Mermaid Tavern

Postby woolf_fire37 » Mon Nov 06, 2006 4:17 am

I'm a bit confused by Keats' Mermaid Tavern. Can anyone give me some information on the context of the poem? When it was written during his life, possible interpretations, etc.? I appreciate any information! :)
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Postby woolf_fire37 » Thu Nov 09, 2006 10:02 pm

Ok, since no one seems to be answering, here is the poem.


Lines on the Mermaid Tavern

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?

Hopefully someone can give me some information on this poem. I can't seem to figure it out...
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Postby Malia » Thu Nov 09, 2006 10:13 pm

I'm not exactly sure, but I believe that various writers and poets gathered at the Mermaid Tavern to discuss their art and have a glass of spirits or two and Keats is just writing a tribute to them in this poem. I've never analyzed the poem before, but I don't believe is meant to have the depth of meaning that, say, his great Odes do.
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Postby Saturn » Thu Nov 09, 2006 11:04 pm

It was a place where Ben Jonson and Shakespeare used to drink in in London.

Its basically a tribute to them and merry olde Englande of Robin Hood etc.
"Oh what a misery it is to have an intellect in splints".
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Postby HBICNewYork » Sun Nov 12, 2006 10:45 pm

i really didnt like this poem
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