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It Happens in the B.R. Families

Franklin P. Adams 1881 (Chicago, Illinois) – 1960 (New York City, New York)



'Twas on the shores that round our coast
From Deal to Newport lie
That I roused from sleep in a huddled heap
An elderly wealthy guy.

His hair was graying, his hair was long,
And graying and long was he;
And I heard this grouch on the shore avouch,
In a singular jazzless key:

"Oh, I am a cook and a waitress trim
And a maid of the second floor,
And a strong chauffeur and a housekeeper,
And the man who tends the door!"

And he shook his fists and he tore his hair,
And he started to frisk and play,
Till I couldn't help thinking the man had been drinking,
So I said (in the Gilbert way):

"Oh, elderly man, I don't know much
Of the ways of societee,
But I'll eat my friend if I comprehend
However you can be

"At once a cook and a waitress trim
And the maid of the second floor,
And a strong chauffeur and a housekeeper,
And the man who tends the door."

Then he smooths his hair with a nervous air,
And a gulp in his throat he swallows,
And that elderly guy he then lets fly
Substantially as follows:

"We had a house down Newport way,
And we led a simple life;
There was only I," said the elderly guy,
And my daughter and my wife.

"And of course the cook and a waitress trim
And the maid of the second floor,
And a strong chauffeur and a housekeeper,
And the man who tends the door."

"One day the cook she up and left,
She up and left us flat.
She was getting a hundred and ten a mon-
Th, but she couldn't work for that.

"And the waitress trim was her bosom friend,
And she wouldn't stay no more;
And our strong chauffeur eloped with her
Who was the maid of the second floor.

"And we couldn't get no other help,
So I had to cook and wait.
It was quite absurd," wept the elderly bird.
"I deserve a better fate.

"And I drove the car and I made the beds
Till the housekeeper up and quit;
And the man at the door found that a bore,
Which is why I am, to wit:

"At once a cook and a waitress trim
And the maid of the second floor,
And a strong chauffeur and a housekeeper,
And the man who tends the door."

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

2:03 min read
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Franklin P. Adams

Franklin Pierce Adams was an American columnist known as Franklin P. Adams and by his initials F. P. A.. Famed for his wit, he is best known for his newspaper column, "The Conning Tower", and his appearances as a regular panelist on radio's Information Please. A prolific writer of light verse, he was a member of the Algonquin Round Table of the 1920s and 1930s. more…

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    "It Happens in the B.R. Families" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 9 Dec. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/14134/it-happens-in-the-b.r.-families>.

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