What is the camel poem? and what does it symbolize?

New to AA? Got questions? Here's the place to ask. Note that no one person speaks "officially" for AA. AA meetings in your local area are always the best source of information. Note that anyone may post and reply to messages in this forum.

What is the camel poem? and what does it symbolize?

Postby ThelonleyMango » Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:56 am

I think there are 3 different versions of the camel poem, but im not sure which one is the official one. And what that official poem symbolizes. Is it supposed to mean to stay dry like a camel?
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:34 pm

Re: What is the camel poem? and what does it symbolize?

Postby Brock » Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:13 am

When this came up in another thread last Saturday, we said it was something which Dr. Bob, a co-founder of AA used to say, he explained it in the book 'Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers' like this -
The camels in a caravan would kneel down in the evening, and the men would unload their burdens. In the morning, they would kneel down again, and the men would put the burdens back on. ’It’s the same with prayer,’ Dr. Bob said. ’We get on our knees to unload at night. And in the morning when we get on our knees again, God gives us just the load we are able to carry for that day.’" Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers (1980), page 229

He also spoke of a camel prayer, like this -
"The tasks of the day can pass with ease
when a camel or I start on our knees.
One Master we serve, the camel and I,
and stay for that day completely dry."

Because this appears in an AA published book, some might call it officially AA's position, but really these are just meant to be insights into the life of one of the men who started AA. And many of us don't like things like this, for exactly the question you asked - “Is it supposed to mean to stay dry like a camel?”

In AA we do a whole lot more than stay dry, because staying dry alone usually leads to an unhappy life. I think it would be safe to say there is no official camel poem or prayer in AA.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
User avatar
Forums Coordinator
Posts: 3578
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

Return to For the Newcomer

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests