“These times are challenging and if someone can be comforted, reaffirmed and reassured by the poem Courage, I say scream it from the rafters.” ~Kyra Solomon
I recently joined the Atlanta West End Rotary Club in Atlanta, GA and have enjoyed meeting other members and making new friends. One new friend, Kyra, gave the invocation at a recent club meeting. It was a poem that has inspired her most of her life. Her father shared it with her when she was a young girl. The words thoughtfully crafted by poet Edgar Albert Guest were her father’s favorite and upon which he relied time and again for courage and inspiration. Kyra would find herself looking to them as well when working through tough times, and still does to this day.
Kyra’s father, Harold Solomon, Jr., was from New York, although he attended college in Ohio at Wilberforce University and Central State University, both HBCUs. During his lifetime, he was a member of the Pershing Rifles, National Honorary Military Society and Omega Psi Phi, where he learned the poem. Mr. Solomon was Athletic Director for Borough of Manhattan Community College at his passing in 1993.
When I asked Kyra if I could share this personal story, this is what she had to say: “These times are challenging and if someone can be comforted, reaffirmed and reassured by the poem Courage, I say scream it from the rafters.” So, here’s hoping that – as did Kyra and her father – you find the comfort, reaffirmation and reassurance you need, especially during this uniquely difficult time, in the words penned by Edgar Albert Guest in his poem Courage, Courage, Courage!, and if so inspired you’ll pass it on to others!
Courage, Courage Courage!
by Edgar Albert Guest
When the burden grows heavy, and rough is the way,
When you falter and slip, and it isn’t your day,
And your best doesn’t measure to what is required,
When you know in your heart that you’re fast growing tired,
With the odds all against you, there’s one thing to do:
That is, call on your courage and see the thing through.
Who battles for victory ventures defeat.
Misfortune is something we all have to meet ;
Take the loss with the grace you would take in the gain.
When things go against you, don’t whine or complain;
Just call on your courage and grin if you can.
Though you fail to succeed, do not fail as a man.
There are dark days and stormy, which come to us all,
When about us in ruin our hopes seem to fall.
But stand to whatever you happen to meet—
We must all drink the bitter as well as the sweet.
And the test of your courage is: What do you do
In the hour when reverses are coming to you.
Never changed is the battle by curse or regret,
Though you whimper and whine, still the end must be met
And who fights a good fight, though he struggle in vain,
Shall have many a vict’ry to pay for his pain.
So take your reverses as part of the plan
Which God has devised for creating a man.
And, remember . . . feed your good dog so your good dog always wins!