Franklin P. Adams

Here you will find the Poem Fifty-Fifty of poet Franklin P. Adams


For something like eleven summers 
I've written things that aimed to teach 
Our careless mealy-mouthéd mummers 
To be more sedulous of speech.

So sloppy of articulation 
So limping and so careless they, 
About distinct enunciation, 
Often I don't know what they say.

The other night an able actor, 
Declaiming of some lines I heard, 
I hailed a public benefactor, 
As I distinguished every word.

But, oh! the subtle disappointment! 
Thorn on the celebrated rose 
And fly within the well-known ointment! 
(Allusions everybody knows).

Came forth the words exact and snappy. 
And as I sat there, that P.M., 
I mused, "Was I not just as happy 
When I could not distinguish them?"