Edgar A. Guest
There’s nothing that builds up a toil-weary soul
Like a day on a stream,
Back on the banks of the old fishing hole
Where a fellow can dream.
There’s nothing so good for a man as to flee
From the city and lie
Full length in the shade of a whispering tree
And gaze at the sky.
Out there where the strife and the greed are forgot
And the struggle for pelf,
A man can get rid of each taint and each spot
And dean up himself;
He can be what he wanted to be when a boy,
If only in dreams;
And revel once more in the depths of a joy
That’s as real as it seems.
The things that he hates never follow him there—
The jar of the street,
The rivalries petty, the struggling unfair—
For the open is sweet.
In purity’s realm he can rest and be clean,
Be he humble or great,
And as peaceful his soul may become as the scene
That his eyes contemplate.
It is good for the world that men hunger to go
To the banks of a stream,
And weary of sham and of pomp and of show
They have somewhere to dream.
For this life would be dreary and sordid and base
Did they not now and then
Seek refreshment and calm in God’s wide, open space
And come back to be men.
A Heap O’ Livin’ / Just Folks
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