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The Poor Tool

From The Tacoma Times, September 20, 1912.
By Berton Braley.

 Of all of the nuisances known unto man
   Since old Doctor Noah saw land,
 The worst it has been my misfortune to scan
   Is always right near to my hand;
 And though I have tried it again and again,
   I never shall care for the postoffice pen.
 It’s sticky and clotted and gummy and old,
   It’s cluttered with shavings and hair;
 In damp, muggy weather it’s covered with mould,
   And though you may handle with care,
 You’ll find, when you’re through, that your fingers — all ten
   Are blackened with ink from the postoffice pen.
 It scratches and sputters and stutters in spots,
   It spatters your cuffs and your sleeve;
 It tears through the paper, it smudges and blots,
   And a trail of distress it will leave;
 For never in all of humanity’s ken
  Could anyone WRITE with a postoffice pen.

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