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I dwelt within the shell of youth
  And thought to live forever;
But when I hinged the roof, in truth,
  It scarce kept out the weather.

I cobbled up a house of blues
  In Northwood Hills and Pinner;
Drunkards danced, but did not choose
  To buy me beer or dinner.

I crept aboard a ship of fools
  With freedom at the mizzen;
The bailiffs came with writs and rules
  And threw us into prison.

I helped erect a tent of bliss,
  Our free-love spirits soaring;
No sooner had we snatched a kiss
  Than innocence went whoring.

I staked a claim and dug a mine
  The fruit of filthy labour;
Then sat and watched the cables whine
  Above my hungry neighbour.

I built myself a monstrous tower,
  Its turrets vast and sprawling;
Alone, each minute seemed an hour,
  And madness came a-calling.

Bright bees of verse about me buzz,
  My hall is wide and handsome;
But handsome is as handsome does,
  With conscience held to ransom.