Edgar Albert Guest

20 August 1881 - 5 August 1959 / Birmingham / England

At Sugar Camp

At Sugar Camp the cook is kind
And laughs the laugh we knew as boys;
And there we slip away and find
Awaiting us the old-time joys.
The catbird calls the selfsame way
She used to in the long ago,
And there's a chorus all the day
Of songsters it is good to know.

The killdeer in the distance cries;
The thrasher, in her garb of brown,
From tree to tree in gladness flies.
Forgotten is the world's renown,
Forgotten are the years we've known;
At Sugar Camp there are no men;
We've ceased to strive for things to own;
We're in the woods as boys again.

Our pride is in the strength of trees,
Our pomp the pomp of living things;
Our ears are tuned to melodies
That every feathered songster sings.
At Sugar Camp our noonday meal
Is eaten in the open air,
Where through the leaves the sunbeams steal
And simple is our bill of fare.

At Sugar Camp in peace we dwell
And none is boastful of himself;
None plots to gain with shot and shell
His neighbor's bit of land or pelf.
The roar of cannon isn't heard,
There stilled is money's tempting voice;
Someone detects a new-come bird
And at her presence all rejoice.

At Sugar Camp the cook is kind;
His steak is broiling o'er the coals
And in its sputtering we find
Sweet harmony for tired souls.
There, sheltered by the friendly trees,
As boys we sit to eat our meal,
And, brothers to the birds and bees,
We hold communion with the real.
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