The introduction is a quiet monologue regarding the idea that Atlantis was a highly advanced antediluvian civilization, and that Atlantean colonists were the basis of the mythological gods of ancient times. Aware of their fate, the Atlanteans sent out ships to carry their masters to safety, and these people were responsible for bringing civilization and culture to primitive humans. When the song begins in earnest, it conveys the message that the singer’s true love may be in Atlantis. The overall theme is common for the 1960s: fanciful mythology as the symbol of the counterculture movement, with the hope that true love will be found if ever Atlantis can be reached.
Atlantis was used in a memorable scene in Martin Scorsese’s 1990 film Goodfellas, where mobster Billy Batts, played by Frank Vincent, was beaten by Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro’s characters.
[via Lars K. Andersen]