Shirley you've heard of Murphy's Law?
Oops -- I'll stop calling you "Shirley" and start again --
Surely you've heard of Murphy's Law?
Emmett Lee Dickinson wrote about what he termed "Murphy's Law" in his poem "Crumbling is now a likely Act" (below on the left). He wrote the poem about his friend Shadrack Murphy.
In an earlier letter to his third cousin Emily Dickinson, Emmett Lee Dickinson wrote about his friend's constant travails with bad luck. "It is found that anything that can go wrong for dear old Shadrack," Dickinson wrote, "generally does go wrong sooner or later."
In a later letter he wrote, "Anything that can possibly go wrong for Mr. Murphy, does. It just seems to be the law with him." Thus was born "Murphy's Law."
Pictured at the right: Emmett Lee Dickinson's friend Shadrack Murphy -- for whom "Murphy's Law" is named.
Dickinson's poem inspired third cousin Emily to pen her poem, "Crumbling is not an instant's act" (below on the right).
By Emmett Lee Dickinson:
Crumbling is now a likely Act
A fundamental phase
Of organized Decays.
At worst a Blunder of the Whole
A Critical reverse
An Error in the Matrix
A Detrimental Force –
Ruin’s expected – Devil’s work
There’ll always be a flaw –
Fail in an instant, all men will
Slipping – on Murphy’s law.
By Emily Dickinson:
Crumbling is not an instant's Act
A fundamental pause
Are organized Decays.
'Tis first a Cobweb on the Soul
A Cuticle of Dust
A Borer in the Axis
An Elemental Rust –
Ruin is formal — Devil's work
Consecutive and slow –
Fail in an instant, no man did
Slipping – is Crash's law.