Robert Service Poems

  • 101.  
    Said darling daughter unto me:
    “oh Dad, how funny it would beIf you had gone to Mexico
  • 102.  
    They must not wed the Doctor said,
    For they were far from strong,And children of their marriage bed
  • 103.  
    The Princess was of ancient line,
    Of royal race was she;Like cameo her face was fine,
  • 104.  
    It's a mighty good world, so it is, dear lass,
    When even the worst is said.There's a smile and a tear, a sigh and a cheer,
  • 105.  
    Drunk or sober Uncle Jim
    Played the boy;Never glum or sour or grim,
  • 106.  
    Cinderella in the street
    In a ragged gown,Sloven slippers on her feet,
  • 107.  
    In the little Crimson Manual it's written plain and clear
    That who would wear the scarlet coat shall say good-bye to fear;Shall be a guardian of the right, a sleuth-hound of the trail-
  • 108.  
    Bob Briggs went in for Government,
    And helps to run the State;Some day they say he'll represent
  • 109.  
    His frown brought terror to his foes,
    But now in twilight of his daysThe pure perfection of a rose
  • 110.  
    When a girl's sixteen, and as poor as she's pretty,
    And she hasn't a friend and she hasn't a home,Heigh-ho! She's as safe in Paris city
  • 111.  
    Say! You've struck a heap of trouble-
    Bust in business, lost your wife;No one cares a cent about you,
  • 112.  
    What puts me in a rage is
    The sight of cursed cagesWhere singers of the sky
  • 113.  
    He used to say: There ain't a doubt
    Misfortune is a bitter pill,But if you only pry it out
  • 114.  
    Three Holies sat in sacred place
    And quaffed celestial wine,As they discussed the human race
  • 115.  
    He wrote a letter in his mind
    To answer one a maid had sent;He sought the fitting word to find,
  • 116.  
    Though I defy the howling horde
    As bloody-browed I smite,Back to the wall with shattered sword
  • 117.  
    An Ancient gaffer once I knew,
    Who puffed a pipe and tossed a tankard;He claimed a hundred years or two,
  • 118.  
    “Carry your suitcase, Sir?” he said.
    I turned away to hide a grin,For he was shorter by a head
  • 119.  
    Dick's dead! It was the Polack guard
    Put powdered glass into his cageWhen I was tramping round the yard,-
  • 120.  
    Ten little brown chicks scattered and scuffled,
    Under the blue-berries hiding in fear;Mother-grouse cackling, feathers all ruffled,
  • 121.  
    Although you deem it far from nice,
    And it perchance may hurt you,Let me suggest that cowardice
  • 122.  
    I love to watch my seven cows
    In meads of buttercups abrowse, With guilded knees;
  • 123.  
    Where are the dames I used to know
    In Dawson in the days of yore?Alas, it's fifty years ago,
  • 124.  
    Sweet maiden, why disguise
    The beauty of your eyes With glasses black?
  • 125.  
    Said I to Pain: “You would not dare
    Do ill to me.”Said Pain: “Poor fool! Why should I care
  • 126.  
    Birds have no consciousness of doom:
    Yon thrush that serenades me dailyFrom scented snow of hawthorn bloom
  • 127.  
    I am a Day . . .
    My sky is grey,My wind is wild,
  • 128.  
    'Twas in the grave-yard's gruesome gloom
    That May and I were mated;We sneaked inside and on a tomb
  • 129.  

  • 130.  
    I opened wide the bath-room door,
    And all at once switched on the light,When moving swift across the floor
  • 131.  
    Old Man Death's a lousy heel who will not play the game:
    Let Graveyard yawn and doom down crash, he'll sneer and turn away.But when the sky with rapture rings and joy is like a flame,
  • 132.  
    Before the florid portico
    I watched the gamblers come and go,While by me on a bench there sat
  • 133.  
    My only medals are the scars
    I've won in weary, peacetime wars,A-fighting for my little brood,
  • 134.  
    In youth I longed to paint
    The loveliness I saw;And yet by dire constraint
  • 135.  
    I loved to toy with tuneful rhyme,
    My fancies into verse to weave;For as I walked my words would chime
  • 136.  
    Said Seeker of the skies to me:
    “Behold yon starry host ashine!When Heaven's harmony you see
  • 137.  
    As I go forth from fair to mart
    With racket ringing,Who would divine that in my heart
  • 138.  
    ‘A shilling's worth of quinine, please,'
    The customer demanded.The druggist went down on his knees
  • 139.  
    One day the Great Designer sought
    His Clerk of Birth and Death.Said he: “Two souls are in my thought,
  • 140.  
    Would it be loss or gain
    To hapless human-kindIf we could feel no pain
  • 141.  
    She said: “I am too old to play
    With dolls,” and put them all away,Into a box, one rainy day.
  • 142.  
    The meal was o'er, the lamp was lit,
    The family sat in its glow;The Mother never ceased to knit,
  • 143.  
    Don't cheer, damn you! Don't cheer!
    Silence! Your bitterest tearIs fulsomely sweet to-day. . . .
  • 144.  
    I drink my fill of foamy ale
    I sing a song, I tell a tale,I play the fiddle;
  • 145.  
    I had a dream, a dream of dread:
    I thought that horror held the house;A burglar bent above my bed,
  • 146.  
    I just think that dreams are best,
    Just to sit and fancy things; Give your gold no acid test,
  • 147.  
    God gave you guts: don't let Him down;
    Brace up, be worthy of His giving.The road's a rut, the sky's a frown;
  • 148.  
    A Frenchman and an Englishman
    Resolved to fight a duel,And hit upon a savage plan,
  • 149.  
    With barbwire hooch they filled him full,
    Till he was drunker than all hell,And then they peddled him the bull
  • 150.  
    At school I never gained a prize,
    Proving myself the model ass;Yet how I watched the wistful eyes,
Total 831 poems written by Robert Service

Poem of the day

Blue And White
 by Mary Elizabeth Coleridge

BLUE is Our Lady—s colour,
White is Our Lord—s.
To-morrow I will wear a knot
Of blue and white cords,
That you may see it, where you ride
Among the flashing swords.

O banner, white and sunny blue,

Read complete poem

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