A lilt and a swing,
And a ditty to sing,
Or ever the night grow old;
The wine is within,
And I’m sure t’were a sin
For a soldier to choose to be cold, my dear,
For a soldier to choose to be cold.
We’re right for a spell,
But the fever is — well,
No thing to be braved, at least;
So bring me the wine;
No low fever in mine,
For a drink more kind than a priest, my dear,
For a drink is more kind than a
priest.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Paul Laurence Dunbar's poem At the Tavern

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