A really good poem by Ben Jonson.

Inviting a Friend to Supper

by Ben Jonson

             Tonight,
grave sir, both my poor house and I
             Do
equally desire your company;
             Not
that we think us worthy such a guest,
             But
that your worth will dignify our feast
             With
those that come; whose grace may make that seem
             Something,
which else could hope for no esteem.
             It
is the fair acceptance, sir, creates
             The
entertainment perfect, not the cates.
             Yet
you shall have, to rectify your palate,
             An
olive, capers, or some better salad
             Ushering
the mutton; with a short-legged hen,
             If
we can get her, full of eggs, and then
             Lemons,
and wine for sauce; to these, a coney
             Is
not to be despaired of, for our money;
             And
though fowl now be scarce, yet there are clerks,
             The
sky not falling, think we may have larks.
             I'll
tell you of more, and lie, so you will come:
             Of
partridge, pheasant, woodcock, of which some
             May
yet be there; and godwit, if we can;
             Knat,
rail and ruff, too. Howsoe'er, my man
             Shall
read a piece of Virgil, Tacitus,
             Livy,
or of some better book to us,
             Of
which we'll speak our minds, amidst our meat;
             And
I'll profess no verses to repeat;
             To
this, if aught appear which I not know of,
             That
will the pastry, not my paper, show of.
             Digestive
cheese and fruit there sure will be;
             But
that which most doth take my muse and me
             Is
a pure cup of rich Canary wine,
             Which
is the Mermaid's now, but shall be mine;
             Of
which had Horace or Anacreon tasted,
             Their
lives, as do their lines, till now had lasted.
             Tobacco,
nectar, or the Thespian spring
             Are
all but Luther's beer to this I sing.
             Of
this we will sup free, but moderately;
             And
we will have no Poley or Parrot by;
             Nor
shall our cups make any guilty men,
             But
at our parting we will be as when
             We
innocently met. No simple word
             That
shall be uttered at our mirthful board
             Shall
make us sad next morning, or affright
             The
liberty that we'll enjoy tonight.

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