Short Stories
All Titles

In Association with Amazon.com

Home > Authors Index > Browse all available works of Edgar A. Guest > Text of At Breakfast Time

A poem by Edgar A. Guest

At Breakfast Time

Title:     At Breakfast Time
Author: Edgar A. Guest [More Titles by Guest]

My Pa he eats his breakfast in a funny sort of way:
We hardly ever see him at the first meal of the day.
Ma puts his food before him and he settles in his place
An' then he props the paper up and we can't see his face;
We hear him blow his coffee and we hear him chew his toast,
But it's for the morning paper that he seems to care the most.

Ma says that little children mighty grateful ought to be
To the folks that fixed the evening as the proper time for tea.
She says if meals were only served to people once a day,
An' that was in the morning just before Pa goes away,
We'd never know how father looked when he was in his place,
Coz he'd always have the morning paper stuck before his face.

He drinks his coffee steamin' hot, an' passes Ma his cup
To have it filled a second time, an' never once looks up.
He never has a word to say, but just sits there an' reads,
An' when she sees his hand stuck out Ma gives him what he needs.
She guesses what it is he wants, coz it's no use to ask:
Pa's got to read his paper an' sometimes that's quite a task.

One morning we had breakfast an' his features we could see,
But his face was long an' solemn an' he didn't speak to me,
An' we couldn't get him laughin' an' we couldn't make him smile,
An' he said the toast was soggy an' the coffee simply vile.
Then Ma said: "What's the matter? Why are you so cross an' glum?"
An' Pa 'most took her head off coz the paper didn't come.

[The end]
Edgar A. Guest's poem: At Breakfast Time