Ellis Parker Butler

(5 December 1869 - 13 September 1937 / Muscatine / Iowa / United States)

Little Ballads Of Timely Warning; II:


Little Ballads Of Timely Warning; II: On Malicious Cruelty To Harmless Creatures
The cruelty of P. L. Brown—
(He had ten toes as good as mine)
Was known to every one in town,
And, if he never harmed a noun,
He loved to make verbs shriek and whine.

The 'To be' family’s just complaints—
(Brown had ten toes as good as mine)
Made Brown cast off the last restraints:
He smashed the 'Is nots' into 'Ain’ts'
And kicked both mood and tense supine.

Infinitives were Brown’s dislike—
(Brown, as I said, had ten good toes)
And he would pinch and shake and strike
Infinitives, or, with a pike,
Prod them and then laugh at their woes.

At length this Brown more cruel grew—
(Ten toes, all good ones, then had Brown)
And to his woodshed door he drew
A young infinitive and threw
The poor, meek creature roughly down,

And while the poor thing weakly flopped,
Brown (ten good toes he had, the brute!)
Got out his chopping block and dropped
The martyr on it and then propped
His victim firmly with his boot.

He raised his axe! He brandished it!
(Ye gods of grammar, interpose!)
He brought it down full force all fit
The poor infinitive to split—




*
(Brown after that had but six toes!

Warning

Infinitives, by this we see.
Should not he split too recklessly.

Submitted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Little Ballads Of Timely Warning; II: by Ellis Parker Butler )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. Invictus, William Ernest Henley
  2. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  4. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love .., Pablo Neruda
  5. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  6. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  7. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  9. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep, Mary Elizabeth Frye
  10. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda

Poem of the Day

poet Sarah Flower Adams

O Love! thou makest all things even
In earth or heaven;
Finding thy way through prison-bars
Up to the stars;
Or, true to the Almighty plan,
That out of dust created man,
...... Read complete »

   

New Poems

  1. Miles away, hannah wilbert
  2. (8) जिख्लाबसे लाइजाम: 'रैसुमै'नो, Ronjoy Brahma
  3. A life unexamined, Robert Plese
  4. Dying, Dipankar Chakraborty
  5. Quotation # 5, saint cynosure ( Ken Bennigh ..
  6. Control, Robert Plese
  7. Time is your worst enemy, Leong Ming Loong
  8. Price, Nassy Fesharaki
  9. Hate Is A Strong Word, Michael Webb
  10. The marvelous designer., Gangadharan nair Pulingat..
[Hata Bildir]