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.

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