Lynn, Lynn, the city of sin…

Lynn, Lynn, the city of sin…

There is a poem that I heard when I first moved to Swampscott (on the north side of Lynn, Massachusetts). I never heard the full poem until today, so I thought it would be fun to share it. There are apparently a few version of it, but I like this one the best.

Kings Beach, Lynn, MassachusettsLynn the city of sin

Lynn, Lynn the city of sin
You never come out, the way you came in

You ask for water, but they give you gin
The girls say no, yet they always give in

If your not bad, they won’t let you in
It’s the damndest city I’ve ever lived in

Lynn, Lynn the city of sin
You never come out, the way you came in.

November 24th, 2013|Blog|8 Comments


  1. […] noticed that a lot of people have enjoyed my posting of the full “Lynn, Lynn City of Sin” poem, so I thought I might put up a few more poems over the next few days relating to […]

  2. Steve G October 22, 2016 at 6:16 am - Reply

    I was born in Lynn but moved to NYC when I was 2 years old. I was talking to someone from that area and mentioned my birthplace, and they said “Lynn, Lynn, city of sin”, but nothing more.
    A year or so later, I met another person and this time I mentioned the first line, and they came right back at me with “you’ll never come out the way you went in”
    I flipped out! “You mean there’s a second line!, amazing!”
    After that, I would joke that it was probably an epic poem, like Beowulf, but you have to learn one line a year from different people you meet randomly, but I never did learn another line, despite many meetings with denizens of the area.
    Yesterday, my 11 year old son said, “I know how to find the WHOLE Lynn poem”. And he simply Googled it.
    Who’d a thunk it could be that simple!

    There’s no reason to stop here, it is time to form an organization, get in the Guiness Book for largest mass recitation of the Lynn poem, propose new lines and stansas, etc.

  3. Jacz November 2, 2016 at 6:53 am - Reply

    Hahah i dont know what prompted the infamous first line to jump into my thoughts this morning. Im a former resident of swampscott & salem…its funny that most people only know the first line…some know the second, but i had no idea there was an entire poem! I thought there were only two lines…never got the second….something about not getting back in the way you got out the first time??!! So thanks for posting the entire poem…now i wonder who wrote it!!

    • Jason P. Stadtlander November 2, 2016 at 7:00 am - Reply

      Jacz, you’re very welcome. Glad you enjoyed it. Yes, my curiosity (and living in Swampscott) spawned the same question for me. Everywhere I’ve looked it’s credited as “Anonymous”.

  4. Janelle Yancy April 26, 2017 at 8:25 am - Reply

    please dont share this negativity……there seems to be generational iniquity passing along in that city….Lets not assure them that it cannot change…… How about this….Lynn lynn, the city of sin, You never get out the way you came in…Some come out better, some come out worse….However you come out, the choice is yours

    • Jason P. Stadtlander February 13, 2018 at 4:17 pm - Reply

      It’s not a matter of “sharing negativity”. It’s a matter of sharing history. History is history. It can’t be re-written.

  5. Steve Gio October 1, 2017 at 8:13 am - Reply

    Well Janelle, you never can tell, when “worse” rhymes with “yours” the rhyme scheme goes to hell.

  6. Nancy Kiley November 6, 2017 at 4:28 pm - Reply

    You don’t know the whole meaning behind the poem. There was a street nicknamed “blood alley”, where pregnant girls went to have illegal abortions, hence the line you never come out the way you went in and abortions are the sin.

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