A Few Labor Day Poems


"I work for someone else", he said;

"I have no chance to get ahead".

At night I leave the job behind;

At morn I face the same old grind.

And everything I do by day

Just brings to me the same old pay.

While I am here I cannot see

The semblance of a chance for me."

I asked another how he viewed

The occupation he pursued.

"It's dull and dreary toil," said he,

"And brings but small reward to me.

My boss gets all the profits fine

That I believe are rightly mine.

My life's monotonously grim

Because I'm forced to work for him."

I stopped a third young man to ask

His attitude towards his task.

A cheerful smile lit up his face;

"I shan't be always in this place,"

He said, "because some distant day

A better job will come my way."

"Your boss?" I asked, and answered he:

"I'm going to make him notice me.

He pays me wages and in turn

That money I am here to earn,

But I don't work for him alone;

Allegiance to myself I own.

I do not do my best because

It gets me favors or applause--

I work for him, but I can see

That actually I work for me.

It looks like business good to me

The best clerk on the staff to be.

If customers approve my style

And like my manner and my smile

I help the firm to get the pelf,

But what is more I help myself.

From one big thought I'm never free:

That everyday I work for me."

Oh, youth, thought I, you're bound to climb

The ladder of success in time.

Too many self impose the cross

Of daily working for a boss,

Forgetting that in failing him

It is their own stars that they dim.

And when real service they refuse

They are the ones who really lose.

Edgar A. Guest


So long as men shall be on earth

There will be tasks for them to do ,

Some way for them to show their worth;

Each day shall bring it's problems new.

And men shall dream of mighter deeds

Than ever have been done before:

There always shall be human needs

For men to work and struggle for.

Edgar A. Guest


I saw them tearing a building down,

A gang of men in a busy town;

With a ho-heave-ho and a lusty yell,

They swung a beam and a sidewall fell.

I asked the foreman, "Are these men skilled

As the men you would hire if you had to build?"

He laughed and said, "No indeed!

Just common labor is all I need.

I can easily wreck in a day or two

What builders have taken a year to do."

I asked myself as I went my way,

Which of these roles have I tried to play?

Am I a builder who works with care

Measuring life with the rule and square,

Or am I a wrecker who walks the town,

Content with the labor of tearing down.

Author Unknown

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Comments 13 comments

anamta 5 years ago

this is very amazing poetry

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BIGCSSHOP 5 years ago Author

Thanks anamta for visiting our Hub. I anm so glad you enjoyed our poetry selections. Please come back again and feel free to share this hub with your friends.

cokey58 5 years ago

The poem listed as "ROLE" is a poem by the Poet Laureate of Michigan Edgar A. Guest who died in 1959. Mr. Guest's title for the poem was "The Builder." Mr. Guest was a resident of Detroit, MI. He wrote over 11,000 poems in his lifetime. He was a reporter for the Detroit Free Press

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BIGCSSHOP 5 years ago Author

Thank you so much cokey58 for taking the time out to share this info with us.I have enjoyed so many of Mr.Guest's poetry.

Rajanbir 4 years ago

thanks for these poems,we enjoyed and learned the value of work by reading these poems

teresa 4 years ago

best and bakwas

christina 4 years ago

It was a useful,beautiful,good and intresting poem about labours day.that i had ever read.thanks for presenting some good poems.i wish you all to present some more new poems.

mehak 4 years ago

9c 1,,,ReAlLy lUvLeD It,,,

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BIGCSSHOP 4 years ago Author

Hi, Rajanbir, teresa, and christina, thanks for stopping by and super thanks for leaving a comment. Have a great year!

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BIGCSSHOP 4 years ago Author

thanks mehak for your comment!

nihal47 3 years ago

good poems

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BIGCSSHOP 3 years ago Author

hi nihal47, thank you so much for the good words. glad you enjoyed the poems.

Meena 19 months ago


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