Poet Robert Service

Robert Service

Robert Service Poems

  • 51.  
    Where once with lads I scoffed my beer
    The landlord's lass I've wed.Now I am lord and master here;-
  • 52.  
    I cannot flap a flag
    Or beat a drum;Behind the mob I lag
  • 53.  
    Three score and ten, the psalmist saith,
    And half my course is well-nigh run;I've had my flout at dusty death,
  • 54.  
    When the boys come out from Lac Labiche in the lure of the early Spring,
    To take the pay of the “Hudson's Bay”, as their fathers did before,They are all a-glee for the jamboree, and they make the Landing ring
  • 55.  
    The woes of men beyond my ken
    Mean nothing more to me.Behold my world, and Eden hurled
  • 56.  
    When Aunt Jane died we hunted round,
    And money everywhere we found.How much I do not care to say,
  • 57.  
    When I blink sunshine in my eyes
    And hail the amber morn,Before the rosy dew-drop dries
  • 58.  
    My Lady is dancing so lightly,
    The belle of the Embassy Ball;I lied as I kissed her politely,
  • 59.  
    From torrid heat to frigid cold
    I've rovered land and sea;And now, with halting heart I hold
  • 60.  
    I bought my little grandchild Ann
    A bright balloon,And I was such a happy man
  • 61.  
    I much admire, I must admit,
    The man who robs a Bank;It takes a lot of guts and grit,
  • 62.  
    At dawn of day the white land lay all gruesome-like and grim,
    When Bill Mc'Gee he says to me: “We've got to do it, Jim.We've got to make Fort Liard quick. I know the river's bad,
  • 63.  
    The night before I left Milan
    A mob jammed the Cathedral Square,And high the tide of passion ran
  • 64.  
    The very skies wee black with shame,
    As near my moment drew;The very hour before you cam
  • 65.  
    When I have come with happy heart to sixty years and ten,
    I'll buy a boat and sail away upon a summer sea;And in a little lonely isle that's far and far from men,
  • 66.  
    But yesterday I banked on fistic fame,
    Figgerin' I'd be a champion of the Ring.Today I've half a mind to quit the Game,
  • 67.  
    He stared at me with sad, hurt eyes,
    That drab, untidy man;And though my clients I despise
  • 68.  
    The songs I made from joy of earth
    In wanton wandering,Are rapturous with Maytime mirth
  • 69.  
    To buy for school a copy-book
    I asked my Dad for two-pence;He gave it with a gentle look,
  • 70.  
    Franklin fathered bastards fourteen,
    (So I read in the New Yorker);If it's true, in terms of courtin'
  • 71.  
    Says I to my Missis: “Ba goom, lass! you've something I see, on your mind.”
    Says she: “You are right, Sam, I've something. It ‘appens it's on me be'ind.A Boil as ‘ud make Job jealous. It ‘urts me no end when I sit.”
  • 72.  
    The poppies gleamed like bloody pools through cotton-woolly mist;
    The Captain kept a-lookin' at the watch upon his wrist;And there we smoked and squatted, as we watched the shrapnel flame;
  • 73.  
    I'm gatherin' flowers by the wayside to lay on the grave of Bill;
    I've sneaked away from the billet, ‘cause Jim wouldn't understand;‘E'd call me a silly fat'ead, and larf till it made ‘im ill,
  • 74.  
    I never thought that Bill could say
    A proper prayer;'Twas more in his hard-bitten way
  • 75.  
    When I was brash and gallant-gay
    Just fifty years ago,I hit the ties and beat my way
  • 76.  
    The daughter of the village Maire
    Is very fresh and very fair, A dazzling eyeful;
  • 77.  
    Between the cliff-rise and the beach
    A slip of emerald I own;With fig and olive, almond, peach,
  • 78.  
    In Wall Street once a potent power,
    And now a multi-millionaireAlone within a shady bower
  • 79.  
    Of bosom friends I've had but seven,
    Despite my years are ripe;I hope they're now enjoying Heaven,
  • 80.  
    (16th January 1949)

  • 81.  
    Let us have birthdays every day,
    (I had the thought while I was shaving)Because a birthday should be gay,
  • 82.  
    The mule-skinner was Bill Jerome, the passengers were three;
    Two tinhorns from the dives of Nome, and Father Tim McGee.And as for sunny Southland bound, through weary woods they sped,
  • 83.  
    I wonder ‘oo and wot ‘e was,
    That ‘Un I got so slick.I couldn't see ‘is face because
  • 84.  
    I am a mild man, you'll agree,
    But red my rage is,When folks who borrow books from me
  • 85.  
    I keep collecting books I know
    I'll never, never read;My wife and daughter tell me so,
  • 86.  
    I like to think that when I fall,
    A rain-drop in Death's shoreless sea,This shelf of books along the wall,
  • 87.  
    Behold! I'm old; my hair is white;
    My eighty years are in the offing,And sitting by the fire to-night
  • 88.  
    She phoned them when the Round was Eight:
    ‘How is my Joe?' they heard her say.They answered: ‘Gee! He's going great,
  • 89.  
    Elisabeth imagines I've
    A yellow streakShe deems I have no dash and drive,
  • 90.  
    One spoke: “Come, let us gaily go
    With laughter, love and lust,Since in a century or so
  • 91.  
    Of all the meals that glad my day
    My morning one's the best;Purveyed me on a silver tray,
  • 92.  
    I draw sweet air
    Deeply and long,As pure as prayer,
  • 93.  
    A Wintertide we had been wed
    When Jan went off to sea;And now the laurel rose is red
  • 94.  
    My brother Jim's a millionaire,
    while I have scarce a penny;His face is creased with lines of care,
  • 95.  

  • 96.  
    If dogs could speak, O Mademoiselle,
    What funny stories they could tell!For instance, take your little “peke,”
  • 97.  
    O meadow lark, so wild and free,
    It cannot be, it cannot be,That men to merchandise your spell
  • 98.  
    A mattock high he swung;
    I watched him at his toil;With never gulp of lung
  • 99.  
    I knew three sisters,-all were sweet;
    Wishful to wed was I,And wondered which would mostly meet
  • 100.  
    It's easy to fight when everything's right,
    And you're mad with the thrill and the glory;It's easy to cheer when victory's near,
Total 831 poems written by Robert Service

Poem of the day

Henry Lawson Poem
Laughing And Sneering
 by Henry Lawson

WHAT tho' the world does me ill turns
And cares my life environ;
I'd sooner laugh with Bobbie Burns
Than sneer with titl'd Byron.

The smile has always been the best;
'Tis stronger than the frown, sirs:
And Venus smiled the waves to rest;

Read complete poem

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