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The Rhyme Maker
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
Oliver Wendell Holmes

Theme:   Praising Wine (firs read)
                     Temperance Movement (second read)

Special Rhyme List:  Now That's Funny!

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. was a noted physician and lecturer, as well as a voluminous "part-time" poet. It was in his role as a lecturer/public speaker that Holmes wrote many of his poems, and much of his poetry bear a perspective of some special occasion.

Holmes' son (“Junior”, 1831-1935) was a Justice of the United States Supreme Court. This Supreme Court jurist inherited his father's wit, which is often displayed in his pithy remarks and official opinions.  Junior is one of the “most-cited” justices of the court.

You have to read this poem twice to "get it".  Skip the [bracketed words] on your first read.  Substitute them for the underlined words your second-time through.
- S. H. Bass  

more Oliver Wendell Holmes at
An Impromptu
Mare Rebrum

The Lyre Of Anacreon

The Voiceless

Stop Button Clutter!
Ode For A Social Meeting –
With Slight Alterations By A Teetotaler

Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894)

Come! fill a fresh bumper, for why should we go
While the nectar still reddens our cups as they flow?
Pour out the rich juices still bright with the sun,
Till o'er the brimmed crystal the rubies shall run.

The purple-globed clusters their life-dews have bled;
       [half-ripened apples]
How sweet is the breath of the fragrance they shed!
                          [taste]                [sugar of lead]
For summer's last roses lie hid in the wines
                 [rank poisons]             [wines!!!]
That were garnered by maidens who laughed through the vines
                                     [stable-boys smoking long-nines]

Then a smile and a glass and a toast and a cheer ;
         [scowl]        [howl]      [scoff]       [sneer]
For all the good wine, and we 've some of it here!
    [strychnine and whiskey, and ratsbane and beer!]
In cellar, in pantry, in attic, in hall,
Long live the gay servant that laughs for us all!
[Down, down with the tyrant that masters us all!]

from The Poetical Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes

The Poetical Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes
Free E-Book at Project Gutenberg


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