Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ODE TO TOBACCO, by CHARLES STUART CALVERLEY



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ODE TO TOBACCO, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Thou who, when fears attack
Last Line: Here's to thee, bacon!
Subject(s): Smoking; Tobacco; Pipes; Cigars; Cigarettes


THOU who, when fears attack,
Bid'st them avaunt, and Black
Care, at the horseman's back
Perching, unseatest;
Sweet when the morn is gray;
Sweet, when they've cleared away
Lunch; and at close of day
Possibly sweetest:

I have a liking old
For thee, though manifold
Stories, I know, are told,
Not to thy credit;
How one (or two at most)
Drops make a cat a ghost --
Useless, except to roast --
Doctors have said it:

How they who use fusees
All grow by slow degrees
Brainless as chimpanzees,
Meagre as lizards;
Go mad, and beat their wives;
Plunge (after shocking lives)
Razors and carving-knives
Into their gizzards.

Confound such knavish tricks!
Yet know I five or six
Smokers who freely mix
Still with their neighbors;
Jones -- (who, I'm glad to say,
Asked leave of Mrs. J.) --
Daily absorbs a clay
After his labors.

Cats may have had their goose
Cooked by tobacco-juice;
Still why deny its use
Thoughtfully taken?
We're not as tabbies are:
Smith, take a fresh cigar!
Jones, the tobacco-jar!
Here's to thee, Bacon!




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