As many of you know, my grandfather recently died and we (the family) are uncovering many things unknown or long forgotten while sorting their stuff. (On a personal note, special thanks to my mom for all the work she is doing in largely spearheading this thankless and at times heart-wrenching process.)

One thing that was uncovered was this printed poem by John Guy Britton (my grandmother’s father) in 1943. The copyright resides with him and his side of the family, but I wanted to copy it up here as I thought it was appropriate for our times today as well.

A part’s lost from our washer, the darn thing’s made of brass
but we’ll get along without it, Like we’re doing ‘bout the gas

The belt’s off the cleaner, That we use to clean the rooms
But Grandma’s house was always clean, And all she had were brooms

The refrigerator’s on the blink, It used to work real nice
But we’ll go back a few decades, And buy some cakes of ice

And now the oil for heating, Is pretty hard to get
so we’ll use the good old fireplace, And we’ll be warm, I’ll bet

What if we’re cool in other rooms? None of us should care
We’ll go through the trunks of yesteryear, For heavier underwear

And soon I’ll have no tires, I don’t intend to cuss
For when they’re run down to the quick, I’ll just block up the bus

They say they want my bumpers, To keep Hitler on the jump
O.K. – with no gas or tires, My car won’t be there to bump

My suit’s all right but looks so queer, With no cuffs of double flares
I never was a fashion-plate, So I just say, “Who cares?”

My coffee’s flat, so it my tea, And yours is too, no doubt
But I’ll just grin and see how quick, I’ll learn to do without

Now these are the frightful hardships, The Home Front has to suffer
So let us stop and think a bit, Could it be any tougher?

Well, we’re not in concentration camps, Our kids are still well fed
No bombs drop through out roofs at night, While we’re asleep in bed

And all the farmers raise, we get, It’s all for our boys – or home
While the cream of the crop on the other side, Goes to Berlin and Rome

We’re free to enjoy our radios, On short waves or on long
Foreign or domestic, In any Nation’s tongue

Our press is free to criticize, We get unaltered news
And we may vote for whom we wish, we’re not told whom to choose

And we may worship as we please, We can run our Congress down
We may even ride our President, And really ‘go to town’

We should be quite happy too, We have no Himmlers here
No Quislings or Lavals to hate, No Gestapo to fear

So compare your hardships and blessings, with those of across the seas
And the very next time you pity yourself, Just stop – and get down on your knees

J.G. Britton
Lansdowne, PA