Robert William Service

(16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)

The Thinker


Of all the men I ever knew
The tinkingest was Uncle Jim;
If there were any chores to do
We couldn't figure much on him.
He'd have a thinking job on hand,
And on the rocking-chair he'd sit,
And think and think to beat the band,
And snap his galusus and spit.

We kids regarded him with awe -
His beard browned by tobacco stains,
His hayseed had of faded straw
The covered such a bunch of brains.
When some big problem claimed his mind
He'd wrestle with it for a fall;
But some solution he would find,
To be on hand for supper call.

A mute, inglorious Einstein he,
A rocking-chair philosopher;
I often wondered what, maybe,
His mighty meditations were.
No weighty work he left behind,
No words of wisdom or of wit;
Yet how I see him in my mind
Snap on his galusus and spit.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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