Robert Service Poems

  • 601.  
    A father's pride I used to know,
    A mother's love was mine;For swinish husks I let them go,
  • 602.  
    “I'm going, Billy, old fellow. Hist, lad! Don't make any noise.
    There's Boches to beat all creation, the pitch of a bomb away.I've fixed the note to your collar, you've got to get back to my Boys,
  • 603.  
    Unto his housemaid spoke the Laird:
    “Tonight the Bishop is our guest;The spare room must be warmed and aired:
  • 604.  
    Said he: “You saw the Master clear;
    By Rushy Pond alone he sat,Serene and silent as a seer,
  • 605.  
    I sat her in her baby chair,
    And set upon its trayHer kewpie doll and teddy bear,
  • 606.  
    “I'm taking pen in hand this night, and hard it is for me;
    My poor old fingers tremble so, my hand is stiff and slow,And even with my glasses on I'm troubled sore to see. . . .
  • 607.  
    Mary and I were twenty-two
    When we were wed;A well-matched pair, right smart to view
  • 608.  
    And when I come to the dim trail-end,
    I who have been Life's rover,This is all I would ask, my friend,
  • 609.  
    I had a bitter enemy,
    His heart to hate he gave,And when I died he swore that he
  • 610.  
    They're hanging Bill at eight o' clock,
    And millions will applaud.He killed, and so they have to kill,
  • 611.  
    Grand-daughter of the Painted Nails,
    As if they had been dipped in gore,I'd like to set you lugging pails
  • 612.  
    Somehow the skies don't seem so blue
    As they used to be;Blossoms have a fainter hue,
  • 613.  
    If you're up against a bruiser and you're getting knocked about-

  • 614.  
    'Twas on an iron, icy day
    I saw a pirate gull down-plane,And hover in a wistful way
  • 615.  
    And so when he reached my bed
    The General made a stand:“My brave young fellow,” he said,
  • 616.  
    While for me gapes the greedy grave
    It don't make senseThat I should have a crazy crave
  • 617.  
    Heaven's mighty sweet, I guess;
    Ain't no rush to git there:Been a sinner, more or less;
  • 618.  
    O dear little cabin, I've loved you so long,
    And now I must bid you good-bye!I've filled you with laughter, I've thrilled you with song,
  • 619.  
    Another day of toil and strife,
    Another page so white,Within that fateful Log of Life
  • 620.  
    I'm goin' ‘ome to Blighty-ain't I glad to ‘ave the chance!
    I'm loaded up wiv fightin', and I've ‘ad my fill o' France;I'm feelin' so excited-like, I want to sing and dance,
  • 621.  
    A passion to be free
    Has ever mastered me;To none beneath the sun
  • 622.  
    The God of Scribes looked down and saw
    The bitter band of seven,Who had outraged his holy law
  • 623.  
    I dreamed I saw three demi-gods who in a cafe sat,
    And one was small and crapulous, and one was large and fat;And one was eaten up with vice and verminous at that.
  • 624.  
    “Lord God of Hosts,” the people pray,
    “Make strong our arms that we may slayOur cursed foe and win the day.”
  • 625.  
    God dwells in you; in pride and shame,
    In all you do to blight or bless;In all you are of praise and blame,
  • 626.  
    The poppies that in Spring I sow,
    In rings of radiance gleam and glow,Like lords and ladies gay.
  • 627.  
    Addict of Punch and Judy shows
    I was when I was small;My kiddy laughter, I suppose,
  • 628.  
    I to a crumpled cabin came
    upon a hillside high,And with me was a withered dame
  • 629.  
    Being a gaoler I'm supposed
    To be a hard-boiled guy;Yet never prison walls enclosed
  • 630.  
    So often in the mid of night
    I wake me in my bedWith utter panic of affright
  • 631.  
    Dusting my books I spent a busy day:
    Not ancient toes, time-hallowed and unread,but modern volumes, classics in their way,
  • 632.  
    When your marrer bone seems ‘oller,
    And you're glad you ain't no taller, And you're all a-shakin' like you ‘ad the chills;
  • 633.  
    I sing of starry dreams come true,
    Of hopes fulfilled;Of rich reward beyond my due,
  • 634.  
    Gazing to gold seraph wing,
    With wistful wonder in my eyes,A blue-behinded ape, I swing
  • 635.  
    Although the Preacher be a bore,
    The Atheist is even more.
  • 636.  
    To hell with Government I say;
    I'm sick of all the piddling pack.I'd like to scram, get clean away,
  • 637.  
    ‘Come, see,' said he, ‘my four-foot shelf,
    A forty volume row;And every one I wrote myself,
  • 638.  
    I've tinkered at my bits of rhymes
    In weary, woeful, waiting times;In doleful hours of battle-din,
  • 639.  
    Time, the Jester, jeers at you;
    Your life's a fleeting breath;Your birthday's flimsy I.O.U.
  • 640.  
    As you gaze beyond the bay
    With such wanness in your eyes,You who have out-stayed your day,
  • 641.  
    I'd rather be the Jester than the Minstrel of the King;
    I'd rather jangle cap and bells than twang the stately harp;I'd rather make his royal ribs with belly-laughter ring,
  • 642.  
    Said I: “See yon vast heaven shine,-
    What earthly sight diviner?Before such radiant Design
  • 643.  
    Gas got me in the first World War,
    And all my mates at rest are laid.I felt I might survive them for
  • 644.  
    Because I was a wonton wild
    And welcomed many a lover,Who is the father of my child
  • 645.  
    “I'll do the old dump in a day,”
    He told me in his brittle way.“Two more, I guess, I'll give to Rome
  • 646.  
    On silver sand where ripples curled
    I counted sea-gulls seven;Shy, secret screened from all the world,
  • 647.  
    I never kill a fly because
    I think that what we have of lawsTo regulate and civilize
  • 648.  
    (The Wounded Canadian Speaks)

  • 649.  
    Because I have ten thousand pounds I sit upon my stern,
    And leave my living tranquilly for other folks to earn.For in some procreative way that isn't very clear,
  • 650.  
    I like to look at fishermen
    And oftentimes I wishOne would be lucky now and then
Total 831 poems written by Robert Service

Poem of the day

Dusk In War Time
 by Sara Teasdale

A half-hour more and you will lean
To gather me close in the old sweet way-
But oh, to the woman over the sea
Who will come at the close of day?

A half-hour more and I will hear
The key in the latch and the strong, quick tread-
But oh, the woman over the sea

Read complete poem

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