On marriage, Fred has things to tell
   Culled from many a friend
—But is it all reliable?
   And whither does it tend?


One pair on which Fred thought he’d check
   Had won the Dunmow Flitch:
The husband was a trembling wreck,
   The wife a raving bitch.


One pair was prone to public rage:
   Outside their house one day
Fred listened as they seemed to stage
   A sentimental play.


Marriage is such a strange affair
   That no one really knows
—Not even Fred—how any pair
   Stack up the cons and pros.

This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 30 Number 7, on page 31
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