A Poem this Time – An Oldie but Goldie


I am not really too big on poetry, haven’t really delved into it for a number of years now. However, there are a few poems that I read as a child that have always stayed in my memory for a long time. Probably, the time spent memorizing these poems for school recitation did the trick, but even now when I come across these poems somewhere, I can recite them fully.

One of my fave poems that I got reintroduced to as an adult is If by Rudyard Kipling. I loved the scene in the Bridget Jones movie – Colin Firth (Mark Darcy) and his father shouting out this poem so well even though falling-down drunk…

If – A poem by Rudyard Kipling

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 them 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!

Lovely 🙂

Do you have any favorite poetry that always moves you? I am not very aware of modern poetry. Is there something you loved that you can recommend to me?

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  • Shobha

    corny but i love sheakespear’s sonnet 116.
    and shelly’s Ozymandias

    • Me too..love Ozymandias. It was part of our CBSE syllabus in school

  • blogforhoi

    Start with Blake (Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience). In the case of Rilke, I suggest that you start with his Letters to a Young Poet and then move to his Duino Elegies. Good luck!

    • Thanks for the suggestions. I will check them out if they are available at Eloor.

      Btw, when are you going to update your new blog? I have already linked to it from my site 🙂

  • My friend suggested Rainer Maria Milke, an austrian poet’s books translated by J.B Leishman

    • Thanks for the suggestion 🙂

      I will definitely look out for it!

  • Its nice to read If, over and over again 🙂
    Everytime I come across this poem, I read it like I am reading it for the first time.. This is an amazing read.

    Rabindra Nath Tagore’s collection of poems is a good read.

  • The best poetry writing tip, though, is to read poetry to write a good poem. Adult Movie

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