Learn More

William Topaz McGonagall

(1830 - 1902 / Edinburgh / Scotland)

Lines in Praise of Tommy Atkins


Success to Tommy Atkins, he's a very brave man,
And to deny it there's few people can;
And to face his foreign foes he's never afraid,
Therefore he's not a beggar, as Rudyard Kipling has said.

No, he's paid by our Government, and is worthy of his hire;
And from our shores in time of war he makes our foes retire,
He doesn't need to beg; no, nothing so low;
No, he considers it more honourable to face a foreign foe.

No, he's not a beggar, he's a more useful man,
And, as Shakespeare has said, his life's but a span;
And at the cannon's mouth he seeks for reputation,
He doesn't go from door to door seeking a donation.

Oh, think of Tommy Atkins when from home far away,
Lying on the battlefield, earth's cold clay;
And a stone or his knapsack pillowing his head,
And his comrades lying near by him wounded and dead.

And while lying there, poor fellow, he thinks of his wife at home,
And his heart bleeds at the thought, and he does moan;
And down his cheek flows many a silent tear,
When he thinks of his friends and children dear.

Kind Christians, think of him when far, far away,
Fighting for his Queen and Country without dismay;
May God protect him wherever he goes,
And give him strength to conqner his foes.

To call a soldier a beggar is a very degrading name,
And in my opinion it's a very great shame;
And the man that calls him a beggar is not the soldier's friend,
And no sensible soldier should on him depend.

A soldier is a man that ought to be respected,
And by his country shouldn't be neglected;
For he fights our foreign foes, and in danger of his life,
Leaving behind him his relatives and his dear wife.

Then hurrah for Tommy Atkins, he's the people's friend,
Because when foreign foes assail us he does us defend;
He is not a beggar, as Rudyard Kipling has said,
No, he doesn't need to beg, he lives by his trade.

And in conclusion I will say,
Don't forget his wife and children when he's far away;
But try and help them all you can,
For remember Tommy Atkins is a very useful man.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: soldier, success, children, friend, people, home, strength, war, remember, respect, child

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Lines in Praise of Tommy Atkins by William Topaz McGonagall )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
  2. Invictus, William Ernest Henley
  3. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  4. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  5. Nothing Gold Can Stay, Robert Frost
  6. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  7. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  8. No Man Is An Island, John Donne
  9. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
  10. The Boy Who Laughed At Santa Claus, Ogden Nash

Poem of the Day

poet Emily Jane Brontë

I am the only being whose doom
No tongue would ask no eye would mourn
I never caused a thought of gloom
A smile of joy since I was born

In secret pleasure - secret tears
...... Read complete »

   

New Poems

  1. Alone, Samantha Gronn
  2. David, Casey Renee Kiser
  3. She Stuck Her Butt Out At Me..., wanderer sailor
  4. Nine Views of the Huangshan, Paul Hartal
  5. Trying to Say Goodbye, Bijay Kant Dubey
  6. Autumn, Leong Ming Loong
  7. Colors, Tom Squires
  8. वक्त का तकाजा है vakt ka takaaja hai, hasmukh amathalal
  9. A Lesson Learnt, Leong Ming Loong
  10. Pleasantries (Ghazal), Akhtar Jawad
[Hata Bildir]