Ellis Parker Butler

A Satisfactory Reform

A merry burgomaster
  In a burgh upon the Rhine
Said, “Our burghers all are
  Far too fond of drinking wine.”
So the merry burgomaster,
  When the burgomasters met,
Bade them look into the matter
  Ere the thing went farther yet.

And the merry burgomasters
  Did decide the only way
To alleviate the evil
  Without worry or delay
Would be just to call a meeting
  Of the burghers, great and small,
And then open every wine cask
  And proceed to drink it all.

“For,” they said, “when we have swallowed
  Every drop that’s in the land,
There can be no more of drinking,
  It is plain to understand.”
So they called a monster meeting,
  And the burghers, small and great,
Drank and drank until they were too
  Tipsy to perambulate.

But there still was wine in plenty,
  So, in sooth, the only way
Was to call another meeting;
  So they called it for next day.
Thus from day to day the burghers
  Met and swallowed seas of wine,
And they vowed the reformation
  Was a mission quite divine.

And today the worthy burghers
  In that burgh upon the Rhine
Still continue their great mission,
  And still swallow seas of wine.
And they vow they will not falter
  In their great reforming task
Till the last drop has been emptied
  From the very last wine cask.

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