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The Kick Under the Table
Edgar Guest


After a man has been married awhile,
And his wife has grown used to his manner and style,
When she knows from the twinkle that lights up his eye
The thoughts he is thinking, the wherefore and why,
And just what he'll say, and just what he'll do,
And is sure that he'll make a bad break ere he's through,
She has one little trick that she'll work when she's able—
She takes a sly kick at him under the table.

He may fancy the story he's telling is true,
Or he's doing the thing which is proper to do;
He may fancy he's holding his own with the rest,
The life of the party and right at his best,
When quickly he learns to his utter dismay,
That he mustn't say what he's just started to say.
He is stopped at the place where he hoped to begin,
By his wife, who has taken at kick at his shin.

If he picks the wrong fork for the salad, he knows,
That fact by the feel of his wife's slippered toes.
If he's started a bit of untellable news,
On the calf of his leg there is planted a bruise.
Oh, I wonder sometimes what would happen to me
If the wife were not seated just where she could be
On guard every minute to watch every trick,
And keep me in line all the time with her kick.

This poem is in the public domain.


Edgar Guest (1881 - 1959)  was born in England,  but moved with his family to Detroit, Michigan, when he was ten years old. He worked for more than sixty years at the Detroit Free Press, publishing his first poem at the age of seventeen, then going on to become a reporter and columnist whose work was featured in hundreds of newspapers around the country. Edgar is said to have written some 11,000 poems during his lifetime, most of it sentimental, short, upbeat verse. Critics often derided his work, but America adored him. He was known as the "People's Poet," served as Michigan's poet laureate, hosted a long-running radio show and TV show, and published more than twenty books.


Post New Comment:
Such a simple but tender thing, and something I think most couples can relate to!
Posted 02/11/2020 10:30 AM
michael escoubas:
How did this guy get in my house?! And how did he sit down at my table?!
Posted 02/07/2020 08:45 AM
This really made me smile - because it's so true!
Posted 02/07/2020 08:00 AM
It's wonderful! Of course America loved reading him. Thank you for publishing it. He would appear to be the Norman Rockwell of verse for the times he lived in. Randy
Posted 02/07/2020 07:28 AM

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