ERE is often the answer to the crossword clue
[Afore] or [Before, in poetry]

ERE crossword clue answer before poets meaning

Long ERE crossword puzzles used it so oft as an answer for [Afore], the [Lead-in to long] was used for [Before, in a poem]. The [Poet’s “before”] has long been an [Outmoded preposition]: the [Poetic conjunction] even qualifies as [Byron’s “before”].

Occasionally, clues excerpt it from an old line, as in [“Able was I __ I saw Elba”]. You’re right: that line is hardly poetic, but there’s a sense of poetry in the clue as ERE itself is the [Palindrome in a palindrome]. One clue from 1989 put it nicely as [A palindrome’s pivot].

[Before, before before]

Universal Crossword – Nov. 20, 2013

(Of course, that same palindrome is often used to clue not only the [Exile isle] of ELBA. But it’s also the source of most clues for such odd-looking constructions as EREI and IERE, which really ought to stay exiled on that island with the other misfit toys.)

Like yesterday’s answer, DEY, “ere” traces to Old English and connects to morning. Its erstwhile use can be seen in “early.”

Here’s a few clues for ERE that still help it shine:

  • Long intro?
  • Shortly before?
  • You may see it before long?
  • “I kiss’d thee ___ I kill’d thee”: Othello