Poetry and Music for Father’s Day

Only a dad with a tired face, Coming home from the daily race, Bringing little of gold or fame To show how well he has played the game; But glad in his heart that his own rejoice To see him come and to hear his voice.

Only a dad with a brood of four, One of ten million men or more Plodding along in the daily strife, Bearing the whips and the scorns of life, With never a whimper of pain or hate, For the sake of those who at home await.

Only a dad, neither rich nor proud, Merely one of the surging crowd, Toiling, striving from day to day, Facing whatever may come his way, Silent whenever the harsh condemn, And bearing it all for the love of them.

Only a dad but he gives his all, To smooth the way for his children small, Doing with courage stern and grim The deeds that his father did for him. This is the line that for him I pen: Only a dad, but the best of men.

“Only a Dad” by Edgar A. Guest. Edgar Guest was born in 1881 and raised in Detroit, Michigan. Edgar began working after school when he was eleven to help support the family after his father, Edwin, lost his job. At 13, he began working as a copy boy for the Detroit Free Press. Edgar’s father died when Edgar was just seventeen. Subsequently, Edgar dropped out of high school to work full time at the newspaper, where he worked his way up from copy boy to the news department. He worked for the newspaper for almost 65 years. He also broadcast a weekly program for NBC radio for over a decade, published more than 20 volumes of poetry and was referred to as “the poet of the people.”1

“Dance with My Father” written and performed by Luther Vandross. Vandross wrote “Dance with My Father” as a tribute to his father who died when Luther was seven. The song recalls Luther’s childhood memories of his father dancing with his mother. The song earned Vandross Song of the Year at the 2003 Grammy Awards.2

1. https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poet/edgar-guest 2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dance_with_My_Father_(song)

Alisa Williams is Spirituality Editor at SpectrumMagazine.org. Photo Credit: Jason Nelson / FreeImages.com

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Can’t ever hear that song without being deeply moved; usually to tears. I miss my father. I hope to see him again soon; when I will also meet my Father and my Brother!


Nice story. Many of us never lived such a life. Never were so many generations Adventists either. Had a dream two nightts ago. My dad was coming at me with a claw hammer. I picked up a two pound sledge from a table at my right and hit him upside the head to survive. He’s ben gone fifteen years now. Some things just don’t go away even though in the daylight you maintain a positive outlook on things. Se la vie for some. It’s nice to now "Sit with Him in heavenly places and be filled with the Spirit. BTW, Paul tells us that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. He , God, no longer resides in the Most Holy place of the Sanctuary, or the weekly gathering place of a “church” building, but in His true believers that fall into obedience with Him because of the daily experience of abiding with Him through the Spirit and in His Word. Either that, or Paul is a liar. "What, know ye not that ye are the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you…"He still walks with us and heals . Praise His Holy Name.


Father’s Day a precursor emotion of children whose love continue or has ceased for the father.
A Day’s of rehearsal to Eulogy: A testimonial lunch in his honor…or never. A Day’s of rehearsal to Epitaph: Inscription a belated advertisement for a line of goods sadly missed or gladly discontinued. Who and which are you?

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