Excerpts from

"The Lighter Side of Masonry"
by Stewart M. L. Pollard

[All items are public-domain]

Transcribed By PM James White

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A Cable Tow is the strongest cord in the World...it will stretch indefinitely!

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And now, my Brethren,
What came you here to do?
When you joined our mystic circle,
Had you a purpose in your heart
To be of service to your fellow man,
And perform your allotted part?

Or came you out of curiosity
Or motives personal in view?
Tell me, Brother of the Square,
What came you here to do?

Have you failed to grasp the meaning
Of the symbols on our chart?
Have you learned to subdue your passions
And make improvements in your art?

Do you always, always, uphold the trusts
On which we firmly stand,
Teaching the Fatherhood of God
And the Brotherhood of Man?

Have you been willing to aid the Brother
When life surges were fierce and wild?
Have you offered cheer and comfort
to the Mason’s widow, wife and child?

If you have done so, my Brother,
You are a Mason good and true,
And can correctly answer
What came you here to do?

The Masonic News, Illinois

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Metric Masonry

"Bearing in mind the time honored adage that 28.349527 grams of prevention are worth 0.5435924 kilograms of cure, I am preparing for Metric Masonry.

"I see no difficulty in the explanation of the 60.96 centimeter gauge and common gavel. Obviously the grave dug due East and West and 1.8288 meters perpendicular is child’s play. My problem is with the pillars...how many millimeters are there in a cubit?"

N. Tracy Waler, E.P.C., Trinity Lodge No. 80, 5528 C.E.



The Indispensable Man

Sometime…when you are feeling important,
Sometime…when your ego’s in bloom,
Sometime…when you take it for granted
You’re the best qualified in the room.

Sometime…when you feel that your going
Would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow these simple instructions
And see how it humbles your soul.

Take a bucket and fill it with water,
Plunge your hand in it up to the wrist.
Pull it out…and the hole that’s remaining
Is a measure of how much you’ll be missed.

You can splash all you please as you enter,
You can stir up the water galore,
But stop…and you’ll find in a moment,
That it looks much the same as before.


The Faithful Few

When the Master calls to order
And you look about the room
You’re sure to see some faces
That from the shadows loom;

They are always at the meetings
And Stay ‘till they are through;
The ones that I would mention
Are the Always Faithful Few

They fill the vacant offices
As they are always on the spot,
No matter what the weather
Though it may be awful hot.

It may be dark and rainy,
But they are tried and true;
The ones that you rely on
Are the Always Faithful Few.

There are may worthy members
Who will come when in the mood,
When everything’s convenient
They can do the Craft much good;

They have knelt around our altar
And are necessary, too;
But the ones who never fail us
Are the Always Faithful Few.

If it were not for these Brothers
Who put their shoulders to the wheel,
And keep our Lodges moving forward
So their light they may reveal,

The Craft could never flourish,
Its work it could not do,
It would shrink and slowly perish
But for these Faithful Few.


"Walk a little plainer, Dad," said a little boy so frail. "I’m following in your footsteps and I don’t want to fail. Sometimes your steps are very plain, sometimes they’re hard to see. So walk a little plainer, Dad, for you are leading me."

"I know that you once walked this way many years ago, and what you did along the way, I’d really like to know. For sometimes when I am tempted I don’t know what to do. So walk a little plainer, Dad, for I must follow you."

"Someday when I am grown up you are like I want to be. Then I will have a little boy who will want to follow me. And I want to lead him right and help him to be true. So walk a little plainer, Dad, for we must follow you."

Tell Him Now!

If with pleasure, you view any work that a man is doing;
If you like him, or you love him, tell him now.

Don’t withhold your approbation ‘til the parson makes oration

And he lies with snowy lilies o’er his brow.

For no matter how you show it, he won’t really care about it;
He won’t know how many tears you have shed.

If you think some praise is due him,
Now’s the time to slip it to him,

For he cannot read his tombstone when he’s dead!


The Challenge

If you think you are beaten...you are;
If you think you dare not...you don’t;
If you’d like to win, but think you can’t,
It’s almost a cinch you won’t.

If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost,
For out in the World, you’ll find
Success begins with a fellows will—
It’s all in the state of mind.

If you think you’re outclassed...you are;
You’ve got to think high to rise;
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win the prize.

Full many a race is run;
And many a coward fails
Ere ever his work’s begun.
Think big and your deeds will grow;

Think small and you’ll fall behind;
Think that you can...and you will—
It’s all in the state of mind.

Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man
But soon or late the man who wins;
is the fellow who thinks he can.

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The Master’s Touch

"What am I bidden, good folks," he cried

"Who’ll start the bidding for me?"

"A dollar, a dollar;" then, "Two! only two?"

"Two dollars, and who’ll make it three?"

"Three dollars once; three dollars, twice,

Going for three..." But no...

From the room, far back, a gray-haired man

Came forward and picked up the bow;

And, wiping the dust from the old violin,

And tightening the loose strings,

He played a melody pure and sweet

As a caroling angel sings.

The music ceased, and the auctioneer,

With a voice that was quiet and low,

Said "What am I bid for the old violin?"

"A thousand dollars, and who’ll make it two?

Two thousand, and who’ll make it three?

Three thousand, once, three thousand, twice,

And going, and gone," said he.

And the people cheered, but some of them cried:

"We do not quite understand what changed the worth?"

Swift came the reply:

"The Touch of the Master’s Hand!"



Crossing The Bar

Sunset and evening star,

And one clear call for me,

And may there be no moaning of the bar,

When I put out to sea.

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,

Too full for sound and foam,

When that which drew from out the boundless deep

Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,

And after that the dark!

And may there be no sadness of farewell,

When I embark.

For tho’ from out our bourne of time and place

The flood may bear me far,

I hope to see my Pilot face to face

When I have crossed the bar.

Alfred Lord Tennyson



There is nothing I can give you which you have not, but there is much…very much…that while I cannot give it, you can take.

No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in today. Take Heaven! No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present instant. Take Peace!

The gloom of the World is but a shadow…behind it…yet within reach, is joy. There is a radiance and glory in the darkness, could we but see…and to see…we have only to look. I beseech you to look!

Life is so generous a giver. But we, judging its gifts by their covering, cast them away as ugly, or heavy, or hard. Remove the covering and you will find beneath it a living splendor woven of love, by wisdom, with power.

Welcome it, grasp it, and you touch the angel’s hand that brings it to you. Everything we call a trial, a sorrow, or a duty…believe me, that angel’s hand is there; the gift is there, and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Our joys too; be not content with them as joys. They too conceal diviner gifts.

And so at this time, I greet you. Not quite as the World sends greetings, but with profound esteem and with the prayer that for you…now and forever…the day breaks and the shadows flee away.

Fra Giovanni mdxiii

God send us men

God send us men whose aim ‘twill be

Not to defend some ancient creed,

But to live out the Laws of God

In every thought and word and deed.

God send us men of steadfast will,

Patient, courageous, strong and true

With vision clear and mind equipped

His will to learn, His work to do.

God send us men with hearts ablaze

All truth to love, all wrong to hate.

These are the patriots nations need.

These are the bulwarks of the state.

Just A Little Boy

He stands at the plate

His heart pounding fast

The bases are loaded;

The die has been cast.

Mom & Dad can’t help him;

He stands all alone.

A hit at this moment

would send both teams home.

The ball nears the plate

He swings and he misses;

There’s a groan from the crowd

With some boos and some hisses.

A thoughtless voice cries,

"Strike out the bum!"

Tears fill his eyes;

The game’s no longer fun.

Remember, he’s just a little boy

Who stands all alone.

So open your hearts and give him a break,

For it’s moments like this

A man you can make.

Keep this in mind

When you hear someone forget.

He’s just a little boy

And not quite a man yet.

Joe Brung, New York City


I have to live with myself, and so…

I want to be fit for myself to know;

I want to be able as days go by,

Always to look myself straight in the eye;

I don’t want to stand with the setting sun

And hate myself for the things I’ve done.

I don’t want to keep on a closet shelf

A lot of secrets about myself,

And fool myself as I come and go

Into thinking that nobody else will know

The kind of man that I really am;

I don’t want to dress myself up in sham.

I want to go out with my head erect,

I want to deserve all men’s respect;

But here in this struggle for fame and pelf,

I want to be able to like myself.

I don’t want to think as I come and go

That I’m bluster and bluff and empty show.

I never can hide myself from me,

I see what others may never see,

I know what others may never know,

I never can fool myself — and so,

Whatever happens, I want to be

Self-respecting and conscience free.

By Edgar Guest

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