Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, A DULL LIFE, by BERTON BRALEY



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A DULL LIFE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The puritan's tyrannical and very puritanical
Last Line: "the puritans are very seldom hung!"
Subject(s): Morality; Puritans; Ethics


The Puritan's tyrannical and very puritanical
Or that is what his critics love to say;
His mien is most lugubrious; he thinks it insalubrious
To laugh aloud or frolic and be gay.
Perhaps there are a few of him who typify this view of him;
I've never chanced to meet with many such,
For those I've met are gentle folk, kind, rather sentimental folk
Who do not get arrested very much.

Perhaps one could procure it—an example of a Puritan
Who looks on all the world with bile and spleen—
But most of those I know about are decent folk who go about
With minds and morals comfortably clean.
This way of life is harrowing and circumscribed and narrowing
Or that is how some people tell the tale;
But one might also mention that and call to your attention that
You seldom meet a Puritan in jail.

It may be hypercritical to hold to views political
That frown on vice and rottenness and drink,
But—survey your locality, you'll notice that morality
Won't often land a person in the clink.
"The puritanic attitude is one of bunk and platitude,"
You hear that stuff from many a clever tongue,
But here's a thought you'd better file upon your desk and letter-file,
"The Puritans are very seldom hung!"





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