Blogger’s Theme Poem: IF


The song I’ve been writing about reminds me of a poem a young friend memorized and shared with me years ago. I taped it to my kitchen window to mull and to (try to) memorize:


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!

by Rudyard Kipling (in the public domain)


Blogger’s Theme Poem

I was going to highlight the bits that really spoke to me – but they all do.

Yes, I think this could very well be the Blogger’s Theme Poem.

Even the Human Being’s Theme Poem.

And like a good theme poem, it gives us something to shoot for.

It’s Your Turn

What bits spoke to you?

How does it relate to your work? Your family? Your hobbies? Your play?


P.S. Thank you, T. You gave me something to think about. And I have. And I do.  And I pray I will.

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  1. mitzitrenz says:

    I fell in love with this poem when I was a young girl getting ready to move into a “new” stage of my life. Now, as I move into what’s probably the final stage of life (that I hope last 20-30 years or more) I’m still in love with IF. It has always made me cry — sometimes happy tears, sometimes melancholony, sometimes with renewed purpose. Thanks for bringing it back into my life. 🙂

  2. Mitzi, what a treasure to meet another “If” gal. 🙂 Kipling seemed to capture the whole of the human experience in one poem, didn’t he? I woke up this morning thinking of one of the lines, praying that God would help me respond in His way rather than what so easily comes naturally.

    Let’s stay in touch, ‘k?

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