Robert William Service

(16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)

A Song Of Suicide


Deeming that I were better dead,
"How shall I kill myself?" I said.
Thus mooning by the river Seine
I sought extinction without pain,
When on a bridge I saw a flash
Of lingerie and heard a splash . . .
So as I am a swimmer stout
I plunged and pulled the poor wretch out.

The female that I saved? Ah yes,
To yield the Morgue of one corpse the less,
Apart from all heroic action,
Gave me a moral satisfaction.
was she an old and withered hag,
Too tired of life to long to lag?
Ah no, she was so young and fair
I fell in love with her right there.

And when she took me to her attic
Her gratitude was most emphatic.
A sweet and simple girl she proved,
Distraught because the man she loved
In battle his life-blood had shed . . .
So I, too, told her of my dead,
The girl who in a garret grey
Had coughed and coughed her life away.

Thus as we sought our griefs to smother,
With kisses we consoled each other . . .
And there's the ending of my story;
It wasn't grim, it wasn't gory.
For comforted were hearts forlorn,
And from black sorrow joy was born:
So may our dead dears be forgiving,
And bless the rapture of the living.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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Comments about this poem (A Song Of Suicide by Robert William Service )

  • Rookie Owen Service (12/16/2011 6:25:00 AM)

    Grin would be my favorite amongst the published (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Robert E Hann (12/1/2007 9:52:00 PM)

    A very touching tale indeed
    with moral for us all to heed.
    Although it seems you can't go on.
    The darkest hour's before the dawn.
    But dawn will come and in the light
    The future may come into sight
    and then quite unexpectedly
    You're right back where you want to be. (Report) Reply

Read all 2 comments »

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