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Villanelle of Things Amusing
by
Frank Gelett Burgess


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These are the things that make me laugh
Life's a preposterous farce, say I!
And I've missed of too many jokes by half.

The high-heeled antics of colt and calf,
The men who think they can act, and try
These are the things that make me laugh.

The hard-boiled poses in photograph,
The groom still wearing his wedding tie
And I've missed of too many jokes by half!

These are the bubbles I gayly quaff
With the rank conceit of the new-born fly
These are the things that make me laugh!

For, Heaven help me! I needs must chaff,
And people will tickle me till I die
And I've missed of too many jokes by half!

So write me down in my epitaph
As one too fond of his health to cry
These are the things that make me laugh,
And I've missed of too many jokes by half!

 

This poem is in the public domain.

 

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

Frank Gelett Burgess (1866 - 1951) was born in Boston. A graduate of MIT, he worked as an engineer and as an art professor before turning to the world of words for his livelihood. Though he was a serious journalist who produced respected articles and reviews, Gelett was best known as a humorist. His comics, children's books, and nonsense poems were much loved during his lifetime; his poem, "The Purple Cow," and his invented characters, "The Goops," remain widely known even today. Gelett is credited with creating the word "blurb," which came from one of his poems.

 


Post New Comment:
Jo:
Yes to laughter. Without it, be'd be in deep trouble. Thanks for posting.
Posted 04/07/2018 03:10 PM
michael escoubas:
Wonderful poem, Jayne, and I can't help but agree with the benefits of laughter. Laughter is particularly important given the times in which we live.
Posted 04/07/2018 08:25 AM


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