Robert William Service

(16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)

Infirmities Poem by Robert William Service


Because my teeth are feebly few
I cannot bolt my grub like you,
But have to chew and chew and chew
As you can see;
Yet every mouthful seems so good
I would not haste it if I could,
And so I salivate my food
With ecstasy.
Because my purse is poor in pence
I spend my dough with common-sense,
And live without the least pretence
In simple state;
The things I can't afford to buy
Might speed the day I have to die,
So pleased with poverty am I
And bless my fate.

Because my heart is growing tired,
No more by foolish passion fired,
Nor by ambitious hope inspired,
As in my youth,
I am content to sit and rest,
And prove the last of life's the best,
And ponder with a cheerful zest
Some saintly truth.

Because I cannot do the things
I used to, comfort round me clings,
And from the moil of market brings
Me rich release;
So welcome age with tranquil mind;
Even infirmities are kind,
And in our frailing we may find
Life's crown of peace.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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