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This is one of two poems I have ever memorized. (the other is a short poem about catsup.) I first learned it who knows where when I was about 5, and it's stuck in my head ever since. Enjoy.

One bright day in the middle of the night,
Two dead boys got up to fight.
Back-to-back they faced each other,
Drew their swords, and shot each other.
A deaf policeman heard the noise,
Came and killed those two dead boys.
If you don't believe this lie is true,
Ask the blind man, because he saw it too.

So one evening at dinner a discussion of oxymorons and paradoxes came up. The discussion is the standard one about military inteligence that everyone has. I am feeling quite content. I am in the know. I am one of the cool kids. When all of a sudden my two friends start reciting the poem above at a very high rate of speed. Gah!!! What manner of insanity is this? How do I not know about this? That is my function... to know things... most especially obscure and insane things.
I returned to my room determined to unravel this mystery. After all I have the power of Everything2 and Google on my side. One quick web search and I soon realized that there were no less than two dozen different versions of this poem. Wow cool! Real modern folklore. This thing is getting passed from person to person and changed (for better or for worse). It is given various titles including, but not limited to: "Two Dead Boys", "One Bright Day", "The Backward Rhyme", "Contradiction Poem", and "The Paradox Poem".
The version above appers to be the most simple (and most common) variant. I have collected some of the more interesting and deviant versions of this verse below.

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Ladies and gentlemen, hobos and tramps,
I stand before you and sit behind you
to tell you something I know nothing about!
Admission is free, you must pay at the door;
So pull up a chair and sit on the floor.
The show is over, but before you go,
let me tell you a story I don't really know :

One bright day, in the middle of the night
two dead boys got up to fight
back to back; they faced each other;
drew their swords and shot each other.
A deaf policeman heard the noise
He came and shot those two dead boys.
If you don't believe this lie is true...
just ask the blind man; he saw it too!

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The famous speaker who no one had heard of said:
Ladies and jellyspoons, hobos and tramps,
cross-eyed mosquitos and bow-legged ants,
I stand before you and sit behind you
to tell you something I know nothing about.
Next Thursday, which is Good Friday,
there's a Mother's Day meeting for fathers only;
wear your best clothes if you haven't any.
Please come if you can't; if you can, stay at home.
Admission is free, pay at the door;
pull up a chair and sit on the floor.
It makes no difference where you sit,
the man in the gallery's sure to spit.
The show is over, but before you go,
let me tell you a story I don't really know.
One bright day in the middle of the night,
two dead boys got up to fight.
(The blind man went to see fair play;
the mute man went to shout "hooray!")
Back to back they faced each other,
drew their swords and shot each other.
A deaf policeman heard the noise,
and came and killed the two dead boys.
A paralysed donkey passing by
kicked the blind man in the eye;
knocked him through a nine-inch wall,
into a dry ditch and drowned them all.
If you don't believe this lie is true,
ask the blind man; he saw it too,
through a knothole in a wooden brick wall.
And the man with no legs walked away.

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Early one morning,
Late last night,
Two dead boys got up to fight.
Back to back, they faced each other,
Drew their swords and shot each other.
They fell to the ground,
From the holes they were in,
One from without,
One from within.
Up the hill their bodies did roll,
Like a golfball on it's way to a goal.
They rolled and they flipped,
They rolled and they flopped,
Until finally their bodies hit bottom and dropped.
They sprang from the holes,
They'd never been in,
And started to duel all over again.
A cop who was there,
Just stood on the side,
And watched with such glee,
As he painfully cried.
He saw the boys rise,
He saw the boys fall,
He saw how short they were,
At seven feet tall.
Then he started to think,
In a blinding slow flash,
I'll tell the whole world what I saw,
And they'll all pay me cash,
To hear of my story,
Of this I'm quite sure,
And when the money's all in,
My blindness I'll cure.

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In the middle of the day, one dark night,
Identical twins, went out to fight.
One was black, the other was white,
Both their mothers, in a state of fright.

They faced each other, back to back,
Brother to brother, white and black.
"What shall we do?" cried each mother.
They drew their swords, and shot each other.

A deaf state trooper, heard the noise,
Shot and killed, the two dead boys.
Although deceased, the two boys sued.
The blind judge noticed, they were both subdued.

"The law's the law! You both must hang!"
"In the electric chair", the jury sang.
"We're sorry", cried the two dead boys.
"We thought the swords were just plain toys"

Their bodies did lay, side by side,
In unkown graves, marked "Hare Nor" "Hide"
You never knew which did the errands,
Identical twins, 'cept for their parents.

All old children, please beware,
Of killing dead boys, anywhere.
You must learn, that once you do,
They might come back, and then sue you.

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In my searching I found somone else who was facinated by this and wrote a column about it. It was rather interesting and helpful. It can be found at:
http://www.kith.org/logos/words/upper2/OOne.html

One fine day in the middle of the night,
Two dead boys got up to fight.
Back to back they faced each other,
Drew their swords and shot each other.

One was blind and the other couldn't see,
So they chose a dummy for a referee.
A blind man went to see fair play,
A dumb man went to shout "hooray!"

A paralysed donkey passing by,
Kicked the blind man in the eye.
Knocked him through a nine inch wall,
Into a dry ditch and drowned them all.

A deaf policeman heard the noise,
And came to arrest the two dead boys.
If you don't believe this story’s true,
Ask the blind man he saw it too!"

--Anon

This poem is currently unattributed to an author in my research, if anyone can cast light on it please /msg me. There also exist many different versions of this rhyme, but this appears to be the most common.

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