Tuesday, May 14, 2013


ANTIDOTE WEEK SCALES NEW HEIGHTS
Joseph Rudyard Kipling, English poet, novelist, short story writer

IF

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 impostors 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 worn-out 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 breathe 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! 

~ Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)

10 comments:

  1. One of the homeschool moms with whom I work saw to it that her children memorized this poem when they were quite young. Later, as maturity allowed, the children learned more about the poem's meaning. These two children -- one graduating from college in a few weeks and the other entering 11th grade next school term -- have told me that this Kipling poem has had a powerful and positive effect on their lives because they try to live by the poem's precepts.

    I must say that these two young people are among the most delightful students with whom I've ever worked! They are popular with both adults and peers because these two young people are kind to others and, at the same time, stand firm in their Christian beliefs. They respect others, and others respect them!

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  2. I memorized this poem in my early 20's. It may sound corny, but it changed me...
    I plan to give Gracie the gift of his wisdom on her 10th birthday.

    xo

    Andie

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  3. It bears repeating, I guess...

    "It's better to be alone than in bad company."
    ~ R. S. Handy


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  4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnApJcGBDFY&noredirect=1

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  5. Another exhortation to virtue?

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  6. I've always had much respect for this particular poem. My parents had a copy of it framed and hung in the house so it's something that's had an influence on my life over the years. Also had to memorize the poem in grade school, way back when. So it's always nice to come across it again since it contains much excellent thought that can be looked at as guide posts in life.

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  7. The only thing wrong with good precepts is that so few follow them.

    -----------> Katharine Heartburn

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  8. To anon above:

    Here's a thought, jerkoff...

    Tis' better hearing crickets chirping in their orchestra pit

    Than hearing idiot jackoffs
    spouting their inane bullshit

    Mr FreeThinke: Another excellent post, sir. And the place smells so much better this week than last.

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  9. I memorized this poem when I was a child. Then I heard the beginning of it this way many years later:

    If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
    Chances are you don't know what's going on.

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  10. Shaw:

    Reminds me of the old Benny Hill rhyme:

    He who laughs when things go wrong,
    has just thought of someone
    he can blame it on!

    ;)

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