The Grumble Family Poem Summary & Line by Line Explanation in English


Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874 – 1942) is a Canadian author who is remembered for her famous novel ‘Anne of Green Gables’. She has published 20 novels as well as 530 short stories, 500 poems, and 30 essays. All these works are highly appreciated by book lovers and critics.

She is the first woman in Canada, to be named as a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in England. She was made an officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1935. In 1943, the Government of Canada designated her as the Person of National Historic Significance after her death.

The Grumble Family is a poem written by the poet Lucy Maud Montgomery. The poem is written in a very humorous way. It is about a family with whom nobody wants to meet and complaints about them. Whatever may happen among them, they always behave like thunder. Everyone complaints about everything, whether the sun rises, about the rain or summer or winter.

Lines 1-8

There's a family nobody likes to meet;
They live, it is said, on Complaining Street
In the city of Never-Are-Satisfied,
The River of Discontent beside.
They growl at that and they growl at this;
Whatever comes, there is something amiss;
And whether their station be high or humble,
They are all known by the name of Grumble.

A family lives in Complaining Street whom nobody likes to meet. Nobody talks or mingles with them. They live in the city of ‘Never-Are-Satisfied’ which is beside the river of Discontent. They go on complaining or grumbling about each and everything. Their first instinct is to find something to complain about and murmur about everything.

They growl at everything. They find wrong in whatever they see or act. Whether they are in a good position or not, they find fault in it and complain about it. They are known by the name of Grumble.

Lines 9-16

The weather is always too hot or cold;
Summer and winter alike they scold.
Nothing goes right with the folks you meet
Down on that gloomy Complaining Street.
They growl at the rain and they growl at the sun;
In fact, their growling is never done.
And if everything pleased them, there isn't a doubt
They'd growl that they'd nothing to grumble about!

Whether the weather is too hot or too cold, they complain about it. They scold alike if it is winter or summer everything goes wrong with the people they meet or neighbors living down on the gloomy Complaining Street. They growl about the rain, if it rains heavily, and growl about the sun if it is hot. It is a fact that their growling never gets completed or stopped and if everything pleased them there is no doubt, that they will grumble, that there is nothing to grumble about.

Lines 17-24

But the queerest thing is that not one of the same
Can be brought to acknowledge his family name;
For never a Grumbler will own that he
Is connected with it at all, you see.
The worst thing is that if anyone stays
Among them too long, he will learn their ways;
And before he dreams of the terrible jumble
He's adopted into the family of Grumble.

But the strange thing is that not one of the same can be brought to acknowledge his family name, as a grumbler never owns that he is connected with it at allThe worst thing to be known about the Grumbler’s family is that if anyone stays too long with them, he will learn their ways before the person knows the truth of the terrible jumble, he will become like an adopted person into the family of Grumble.

Lines 25-32

And so it were wisest to keep our feet
From wandering into Complaining Street;
And never to growl, whatever we do,
Lest we be mistaken for Grumblers, too.
Let us learn to walk with a smile and a song,
No matter if things do sometimes go wrong;
And then, be our station high or humble,
We'll never belong to the family of Grumble!

The poet, therefore, insists that it is wisest to keep our feet away from wandering into the Complaining Street and not growl like the grumbler’s family no matter what the situation is otherwise we might be mistaken as the Grumblers. Therefore, we should learn to walk with a smile and a song. We should not bother ourselves, no matter if things go wrong or if we are in a good or a low position. We should never belong to the family of grumble.


The Grumble Family is an educative poem with a good message for the readers. It describes the negativism in people. It tells us that we must not complain about little things in life. All the disadvantages and wrongs we face must be taken in our stride to keep them off. And move on with a smile and a positive frame of mind. This poem teaches us what we should not do in our life.

The title of the poem talks about a pessimistic family. The poet indirectly advises us to develop a positive attitude. She portrays the discontented family here. The poet wants us to accept life as it is. We should not find fault in each and everything like the members of the grumble family. We should be optimistic. We should accept reality and face the trials and tribulations of our life.

Life is full of challenges. It is not a bed of roses. We should treat joys and sorrows equally. We must stop complaining about others. This is the lesson we must leam from the grumble family. Then only we will be different from them so that everyone will like us.