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Dad Poems

Table of Contents

  1. The Affectionate Father by Eliza and Sarah Wolcott
  2. My Father by Richard Coe
  3. To Father by Mary E. Tucker
  4. My Father by Paul Hamilton Hayne
  5. Father and I by Ruby Archer
  6. A Boy and His Dad by Edgar A. Guest
  7. Example by Edgar A. Guest
  8. The Boy's Ideal by Edgar A. Guest

  1. The Affectionate Father

    And now the lonely father bends
    Beneath the weight of years,
    His children, best of all his friends,
    Confirm their love with tears.

    A Name in the Sand
    Hannah Flagg Gould
    by Eliza and Sarah Wolcott

    If love and friendship e'er is found,
    'Tis in a father's breast;
    His fond paternal prayers abound,
    And his devotion's blest.

    His children near him side by side,
    With smiles of gladness play;
    While innocence and love preside,
    To crown the happy day.

    But who can tell a mother's love,
    When her devotions rise,
    Her infant's lips are taught to move,
    To gain the heavenly prize.

    She lives to see her children blest,
    To crown her for her care,
    She dies with truth and grace possess'd
    She enters heaven with prayer.

    And now the lonely father bends
    Beneath the weight of years,
    His children, best of all his friends,
    Confirm their love with tears.

    They view the hand that toil'd for them,
    That kind paternal hand'
    They hear his pray'rful accents, when
    He joins the sleeping band.

    An aged father's love and care,
    Has almost told the tale,
    Howe'er possess'd with love that's rare,
    That strength with life must fail.

    But when dear Julia's father sleeps
    Beneath the peaceful sod,
    Hope will revive while memory weeps,
    And trust he's with his God.

  2. My Father

    My father was "an honest man—
    The noblest work of God!

    - Richard Coe
    My Father
    by Richard Coe

    My father was a parent kind,
    And loved his children dear;
    And when his hour of death drew nigh
    We shed full many a tear;
    We wept—but not in bitterness,
    For well we knew that he
    Enjoy'd throughout the shadow-vale
    The smile of Deity!

    He had a pleasant word for all
    Who came within his way,
    A smile was ever on his face—
    A kind, benignant ray.
    Where'er he roam'd he made him friends
    Of high or low degree;
    The only birthright that he own'd
    Was sterling honesty!

    Misfortune's heavy shadow fell
    Upon his later years,
    We mark'd with grief his failing strength,
    And turn'd to hide our tears:
    At length an angel messenger
    Commission'd from the sky,
    Approach'd my father with a smile,
    And bore his soul on high!

    We laid him in his quiet grave,
    A rural, soft retreat,
    And turn'd our faces from the spot,
    With slow, unwilling feet!
    We raised no graven monument
    Above his humble sod;—
    My father was "an honest man—
    The noblest work of God!

  3. To Father

    by Mary E. Tucker

    My father! when I saw thee last,
    Thy noble, manly form,
    Was unbent by the cares of time —
    Unshattered by life's storm.

    The raven hair around thy brow
    Was scarcely tinged with gray —
    While the bright lustre of thine eye
    Denied old age's sway.

    Oft in my dreams I see thy face,
    As 'twas when last we met;
    If we should never meet again,
    Thy smile I'll ne'er forget.

    My father, years have passed since then;
    Aye, stern, heart-breaking years;
    And we have each been made to feel
    Life's sorrows, and life's tears.

    Now, I am in my womanhood —
    They say, life's glorious page;
    And, father, I regret to think,
    That you have reached old age.

    Grieve not, grieve not, for broken buds,
    They'll open in the sky;
    In bower of celestial light,
    They'll bloom, and never die.

    Dear father, thou hast ever been
    To me, thy orphan child,
    A father and a mother too,
    Kind, thoughtful, just and mild.

    Then grant me, father, but this boon,
    Then will thy child be blest —
    Let me watch o'er thy latest years,
    And lay thee down to rest.

  4. My Father

    by Paul Hamilton Hayne

    My father! in the vague, mysterious past,
    My boyish thoughts have wandered o'er and o'er,
    To thy lone g s te upon a distant shore.
    The wanderer oi the waters, still at last.

    Never in childhood have I blithely sprung
    To catch my father's voice, or climb his knee;
    He was a constant pilgrim of the sea.
    And died upon it when his boy was young.

    He perished not in conflict nor in flame,
    No laurel garland rests upon his tomb;
    Yet in stern duty's path he met his doom;
    A life heroic, though unwed to fame!

    First in vague depths of fancy, scarce defined,
    Love limned his wavering likeness on my soul,
    Till through slow growths it waxed a perfect whole
    Of clear conceptions, brightening heart and mind.

    His careless bearing and his face,
    His cordial eye; his firm-knit, stalwart form,
    Fitted to breast the fight, the wreck, the storm;
    The sailor's frankness and the grace.

    In dreams, in dreams we've mingled, and a swell
    Of feeling mightier for the eyes' eclipse,
    The music of a blest Apocalypse,
    Thrilled through my spirit with its mystic spell:

    Ah, then! ofttimes a sadder scene will rise,
    A gallant vessel through the mist bound day,
    Lifting her spectral spars above the bay,
    Gloomily swayed against gray glimmering skies.

    O'er the dim billows thundering, peals a boom
    Of the deep gun that bursteth as a knell.
    When the brave tender to the brave farewell—
    And strong arms bear a comrade to the tomb.

    *****

    The opened sod: a sorrowing band beside—
    One rattling roll of musketry, and then,
    A man no more among his fellow-men,
    Darkness his chamber, and the earth his bride,

    My father sleeps in peace; perchance more blest
    Than some he left to mourn him, and to know
    The bitter blight of an enduring woe,
    Longing (how oft!) with him to be at rest.

  5. Father and I

    by Ruby Archer

    Father and I were gypsies.—
    We tried to lose our way
    Among the woodland mystery,
    When we'd a holiday.

    My hand about his finger,
    We followed brook and dell.
    No need to voice our ecstasy—
    The robins told it well.

    His love I took for granted,
    Owned every dear caress,
    Nor dreame'd of how a little girl
    Would feel when fatherless.

    Now I, poor lonely gypsey,
    Roam wood and hill and blue;
    But no one loves them all with me
    As Father used to do.

  6. A Boy and His Dad

    by Edgar A. Guest

    A boy and his dad on a fishing-trip—
    There is a glorious fellowship!
    Father and son and the open sky
    And the white clouds lazily drifting by,
    And the laughing stream as it runs along
    With the clicking reel like a martial song,
    And the father teaching the youngster gay
    How to land a fish in the sportsman's way.

    I fancy I hear them talking there
    In an open boat, and the speech is fair.
    And the boy is learning the ways of men
    From the finest man in his youthful ken.
    Kings, to the youngster, cannot compare
    With the gentle father who's with him there.
    And the greatest mind of the human race
    Not for one minute could take his place.

    Which is happier, man or boy?
    The soul of the father is steeped in joy,
    For he's finding out, to his heart's delight,
    That his son is fit for the future fight.
    He is learning the glorious depths of him,
    And the thoughts he thinks and his every whim;
    And he shall discover, when night comes on,
    How close he has grown to his little son.

    A boy and his dad on a fishing-trip—
    Builders of life's companionship!
    Oh, I envy them, as I see them there
    Under the sky in the open air,
    For out of the old, old long-ago
    Come the summer days that I used to know,
    When I learned life's truths from my father's lips
    As I shared the joy of his fishing-trips.

  7. Example

    by Edgar A. Guest

    Perhaps the victory shall not come to me,
    Perhaps I shall not reach the goal I seek,
    It may be at the last I shall be weak
    And falter as the promised land I see;
    Yet I must try for it and strive to be
    All that a conqueror is. On to the peak,
    Must be my call—this way lies victory!
    Boy, take my hand and hear me when I speak.

    There is the goal. In honor make the fight.
    I may not reach it but, my boy, you can.
    Cling to your faith and work with all your might,
    Some day the world shall hail you as a man.
    And when at last shall come your happy day,
    Enough for me that I have shown the way.

  8. The Boy's Ideal

    by Edgar A. Guest

    I must be fit for a child to play with,
    Fit for a youngster to walk away with;
    Fit for his trust and fit to be
    Ready to take him upon my knee;
    Whether I win or I lose my fight,
    I must be fit for my boy at night.

    I must be fit for a child to come to,
    Speech there is that I must be dumb to;
    I must be fit for his eyes to see,
    He must find nothing of shame in me;
    Whatever I make of myself, I must
    Square to my boy's unfaltering trust.

    I must be fit for a child to follow,
    Scorning the places where loose men wallow;
    Knowing how much he shall learn from me,
    I must be fair as I'd have him be;
    I must come home to him, day by day,
    Clean as the morning I went away.

    I must be fit for a child's glad greeting,
    His are eyes that there is no cheating;
    He must behold me in every test,
    Not at my worst, but my very best;
    He must be proud when my life is done
    To have men know that he is my son.

    How sweet 'tis to sit 'neath a fond father's smile,

    – John Howard Payne
    Home, Sweet Home!

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