Adams Papers

John Quincy Adams to William Cranch, 20 August 1786

John Quincy Adams to William Cranch

Cambridge Augt: 20th. 1786


You are, though living in a garret

No more a Poet, than a Parrot

At first you take a doggrel verse,

And, alexandrine then rehearse.

You hobble on, or wrong or right

With sometimes ten and sometimes eight.

By your own syllogistic rule

You must confess yourself a fool.

and if Bob Longer lacks of wit

He that is shorter must have it.

Besides I see you’ve chang’d your name

Because the first brought you to shame

And must certainly be wrong

Who now is short, and now is long.

R. S.1

RC (Privately owned); addressed: “Mr: Bob Longer. In the paradise of fools.”

1Probably an abbreviation for “Robert Shorter” (that is, Bob Shorter), a comment on JQA’s and Cranch’s relative heights.

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