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Spoon River Anthology
Edgar Lee Masters

Thomas Rhodes << --- >> Penniwit the Artist

Ida Chicken

AFTER I had attended lectures
At our Chautauqua, and studied French
For twenty years, committing the grammar
Almost by heart,
I thought I'd take a trip to Paris
To give my culture a final polish.
So I went to Peoria for a passport --
(Thomas Rhodes was on the train that morning.)
And there the clerk of the district court
Made me swear to support and defend
The constitution -- yes, even me --
Who couldn't defend or support it at all!
And what do you think? That very morning
The Federal Judge, in the very next room
To the room where I took the oath,
Decided the constitution
Exempted Rhodes from paying taxes
For the water works of Spoon River!

Source: Project Gutenberg

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