Weekend Wisdom: Edgar Albert Guest

After posting Ralph Waldo Emerson last Sunday, Mom emailed me and said she would locate the book my Grandfather’s class gave him of Ralph’s poems.

Well it was not a book of Ralph’s but a book of Edgar Albert Guest’s poetry that was given to my Grandfather.

Today and tomorrow’s Weekend Wisdom will feature some of Edgar’s work.


Hard Luck

Ain’t no use as I can see
In sittin’ underneath a tree
An’ growlin’ that your luck is bad,
An’ that your life is extry sad;
Your life ain’t sadder than your neighbor’s
Nor any harder are your labors;
It rains on him the same as you,
An’ he has work he hates to do;
An’ he gits tired an’ he gits cross,
An’ he has trouble with the boss;
You take his whole life, through an’ through,
Why, he’s no better off than you.

If whinin’ brushed the clouds away
I wouldn’t have a word to say;
If it made good friends out o’ foes
I’d whine a bit, too, I suppose;
But when I look around an’ see
A lot o’ men resemblin’ me,
An’ see ’em sad, an’ see ’em gay
With work t’ do most every day,
Some full o’ fun, some bent with care,
Some havin’ troubles hard to bear,
I reckon, as I count my woes,
They’re ’bout what everybody knows.

The day I find a man who’ll say
He’s never known a rainy day,
Who’ll raise his right hand up an’ swear
In forty years he’s had no care,
Has never had a single blow,
An’ never known one touch o’ woe,
Has never seen a loved one die,
Has never wept or heaved a sigh,
Has never had a plan go wrong,
But allas laughed his way along;
Then I’ll sit down an’ start to whine
That all the hard luck here is mine.

Edgar Albert Guest


  • Grandpa would be proud you used this. The book was given to him for Christmas in 1921 his third year of teaching in a one room school house in Holmes Co just before he moved to East Sparta to teach at “Skin Hill.” The book is well worn as he enjoyed Edgar. Thank you for his memory on this mothers day weekend. Love you bunches.