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Poem by Edgar Albert Guest

When Nellies' on the Job

The bright spots in my life are when the servant quits the place,
Although that grim disturbance brings a frown to Nellie's face;
The week between the old girl's' reign and entry of the new
Is one that's filled with happiness and comfort through and through.
The charm of living's back again--a charm that servants rob--
I like the home, I like the meals, when Nellie's on the job.

There's something in a servant's ways, however fine they be,
That has a cold and distant touch and frets the soul of me.
The old home never looks so well, as in that week or two
That we are servantless and Nell has all the work to do.
There is a sense of comfort then that makes my pulses throb
And home is as it ought to be when Nellie's on the job.

Think not that I'd deny her help or grudge the servant's pay;
When one departs we try to get another right away;
I merely state the simple fact that no such joys I've known
As in those few brief days at home when we've been left alone.
There is a gentleness that seems to soothe this selfish elf
And, Oh, I like to eat those meals that Nellie gets herself!

You cannot buy the gentle touch that mother gives the place;
No servant girl can do the work with just the proper grace.
And though you hired the queen of cooks to fashion your croquettes,
Her meals would not compare with those your loving comrade gets;
So, though the maid has quit again, and she is moved to sob,
The old home's at its finest now, for Nellie's on the job.

Edgar Albert Guest

Edgar Albert Guest's other poems:
  1. Sacrifice
  2. A Boy's Tribute
  3. Bud
  4. Songs of Rejoicing
  5. Curly Locks

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