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The Height of the Ridiculous

Written by: Oliver Wendell Holmes | Biography
 | Quotes (200) |
 I WROTE some lines once on a time 
In wondrous merry mood, 
And thought, as usual, men would say
They were exceeding good.

They were so queer, so very queer, 
I laughed as I would die;
Albeit, in the general way, 
A sober man am I.

I called my servant, and he came;
How kind it was of him 
To mind a slender man like me, 
He of the mighty limb.

"These to the printer," I exclaimed, 
And, in my humorous way, 
I added, (as a trifling jest,)
"There'll be the devil to pay." 

He took the paper, and I watched, 
And saw him peep within; 
At the first line he read, his face
Was all upon the grin.

He read the next; the grin grew broad, 
And shot from ear to ear; 
He read the third; a chuckling noise 
I now began to hear.

The fourth; he broke into a roar; 
The fifth; his waistband split;
The sixth; he burst five buttons off, 
And tumbled in a fit.

Ten days and nights, with sleepless eye, 
I watched that wretched man, 
And since, I never dare to write 
As funny as I can.