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Just Folks   By: (1881-1959)

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by Edgar A. Guest

To the Little Mother and the Memory of the Big Father, This Simple Book Is Affectionately Dedicated

Just Folks

We're queer folks here. We'll talk about the weather, The good times we have had together, The good times near, The roses buddin', an' the bees Once more upon their nectar sprees; The scarlet fever scare, an' who Came mighty near not pullin' through, An' who had light attacks, an' all The things that int'rest, big or small; But here you'll never hear of sinnin' Or any scandal that's beginnin'. We've got too many other labors To scatter tales that harm our neighbors.

We're strange folks here. We're tryin' to be cheerful, An' keep this home from gettin' tearful. We hold it dear Too dear for pettiness an' meanness, An' nasty tales of men's uncleanness. Here you shall come to joyous smilin', Secure from hate an' harsh revilin'; Here, where the wood fire brightly blazes, You'll hear from us our neighbor's praises. Here, that they'll never grow to doubt us, We keep our friends always about us; An' here, though storms outside may pelter Is refuge for our friends, an' shelter.

We've one rule here, An' that is to be pleasant. The folks we know are always present, Or very near. An' though they dwell in many places, We think we're talkin' to their faces; An' that keeps us from only seein' The faults in any human bein', An' checks our tongues when they'd go trailin' Into the mire of mortal failin'. Flaws aren't so big when folks are near you; You don't talk mean when they can hear you. An' so no scandal here is started, Because from friends we're never parted.

As It Goes

In the corner she's left the mechanical toy, On the chair is her Teddy Bear fine; The things that I thought she would really enjoy Don't seem to be quite in her line. There's the flaxen haired doll that is lovely to see And really expensively dressed, Left alone, all uncared for, and strange though it be, She likes her rag dolly the best.

Oh, the money we spent and the plans that we laid And the wonderful things that we bought! There are toys that are cunningly, skillfully made, But she seems not to give them a thought. She was pleased when she woke and discovered them there, But never a one of us guessed That it isn't the splendor that makes a gift rare She likes her rag dolly the best.

There's the flaxen haired doll, with the real human hair, There's the Teddy Bear left all alone, There's the automobile at the foot of the stair, And there is her toy telephone; We thought they were fine, but a little child's eyes Look deeper than ours to find charm, And now she's in bed, and the rag dolly lies Snuggled close on her little white arm.


Old fashioned flowers! I love them all: The morning glories on the wall, The pansies in their patch of shade, The violets, stolen from a glade, The bleeding hearts and columbine, Have long been garden friends of mine; But memory every summer flocks About a clump of hollyhocks.

The mother loved them years ago; Beside the fence they used to grow, And though the garden changed each year And certain blooms would disappear To give their places in the ground To something new that mother found, Some pretty bloom or rosebush rare The hollyhocks were always there... Continue reading book >>

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