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The Pessimist
by
Benjamin Franklin King


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Nothing to do but work,
Nothing to eat but food,
Nothing to wear but clothes
To keep one from going nude.
Nothing to breathe but air
Quick as a flash 't is gone;
Nowhere to fall but off,
Nowhere to stand but on.
Nothing to comb but hair,
Nowhere to sleep but in bed,
Nothing to weep but tears,
Nothing to bury but dead.
Nothing to sing but songs,
Ah, well, alas! alack!
Nowhere to go but out,
Nowhere to come but back.
Nothing to see but sights,
Nothing to quench but thirst,
Nothing to have but what we’ve got;
Thus thro’ life we are cursed.
Nothing to strike but a gait;
Everything moves that goes.
Nothing at all but common sense
Can ever withstand these woes.

This poem is in the public domain.

 

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Benjamin Franklin King (1857 - 1894) was born in St. Joseph, Michigan, and first garnered fame as a sort of American Mozart. A child prodigy who delighted audiences with his prowess at the piano, Benjamin eventually applied his talent for humor and satire to writing poetry. His work was frequently published in leading newspapers and journals of his day, and after his death, which occurred while he was on a reading tour, the Chicago Press Club put together a collection of his poems and had it published. The book was a bestseller for many years.

 


New comments are closed for now.
dotief@comcast.net:
I also love this one!!!
Posted 08/27/2014 05:57 PM
erinsnana:
I love this!!
Posted 08/27/2014 07:30 AM
Ross Kightly:
A poet unknown to me who has made a grey 6 a.m. so much brighter! (Nothing to do but smile. What a TERMINAL DRAG!!)
Posted 08/26/2014 11:51 PM


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