If – Rudyard Kipling

Standard

This is one of my favourite poems. It speaks to me. My (crazy alcoholic) Aunty used to recite it to me.

It references men, but I think of it as gender neutral.

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

Advertisements

3 responses »

  1. Pingback: It ain’t pretty…. « Sassydrcil’s Weblog

  2. Hi There! I came across your interesting blog while searching for postings of the poem “If.” A group of “If” enthusiasts, myself included, have started a website at http://www.allthingsif.org. I think you might like it. We’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t mind taking a look at it and putting a link under your post of “If” back to our site and possibly putting us in your blogroll too, if you like our site. Thanks so much for considering. I wish you luck in your running endeavor!
    Sincerely,
    Susan
    susan.bertram@allthingsif.org

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s