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Prehistoric Smith, Quaternary Epoch, Post-Pliocene Period

A man sat on a rock and sought
Refreshment from his thumb;
A dinotherium wandered by
And scared him some.
 
His name was Smith. The kind of rock
He sat upon was shale.
One feature quite distinguished him,
He had a tail.
 
The danger past, he fell into
A revery austere;
While with his tail he whisked a fly
From off his ear.
 
"Mankind deteriorates," he said,
"Grows weak and incomplete;
And each new generation seems
Yet more effete.
 
"Nature abhors imperfect work,
And on it lays her ban;
And all creation must despise
A tailless man.
 
"But fashion's dictates rule supreme,
Ignoring common sense;
And fashion says, to dock your tail
Is just immense.
 
"And children now come in the world
With half a tail or less;
Too stumpy to convey a thought,
And meaningless.
 
"It kills expression. How can one
Set forth, in words that drag,
The best emotions of the soul,
Without a wag?"
 
Sadly he mused upon the world,
Its follies and its woes;
Then wiped the moisture from his eyes,
And blew his nose.
 
But clothed in earrings, Mrs. Smith
Came wandering down the dale;
And, smiling, Mr. Smith arose,
And wagged his tail.
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

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David Law Proudfit

David Law Proudfit was an American poet and lithographer, who also wrote under the pseudonym Peleg Arkwright. Son of a clergyman, Proudfit was educated at the common schools until the onset of the Civil War. Enlisting as a private in the 1st Regiment New York Mounted Rifles aged nineteen, he spent four years as a soldier, rising to the rank of major. He then went to New York and entered business in lithography. He began contributing to periodicals under the pseudonym Peleg Arkwright, until success encouraged him to write under his own name. In 1868 he married Frances Marian Dodge. His later business interests included pneumatic tubes; in the 1880s he was president of the Meteor despatch company of New York. more…

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