Verse > Anthologies > Louis Untermeyer, ed. > Modern American Poetry
Louis Untermeyer, ed. (1885–1977). Modern American Poetry.  1919.
Franklin P. Adams. 1881–
89. Those Two Boys
WHEN Bill was a lad he was terribly bad. 
    He worried his parents a lot; 
He'd lie and he'd swear and pull little girls' hair; 
    His boyhood was naught but a blot. 
At play and in school he would fracture each rule—         5
    In mischief from autumn to spring; 
And the villagers knew when to manhood he grew 
    He would never amount to a thing. 
When Jim was a child he was not very wild; 
    He was known as a good little boy;  10
He was honest and bright and the teacher's delight— 
    To his mother and father a joy. 
All the neighbors were sure that his virtue'd endure, 
    That his life would be free of a spot; 
They were certain that Jim had a great head on him  15
    And that Jim would amount to a lot. 
And Jim grew to manhood and honor and fame 
    And bears a good name; 
While Bill is shut up in a dark prison cell— 
    You never can tell.  20

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