The Quitter Poem by Robert William Service

The Quitter

Rating: 5.0


When you're lost in the Wild, and you're scared as a child,
And Death looks you bang in the eye,
And you're sore as a boil, it's according to Hoyle
To cock your revolver and . . . die.
But the Code of a Man says: "Fight all you can,"
And self-dissolution is barred.
In hunger and woe, oh, it's easy to blow . . .
It's the hell-served-for-breakfast that's hard.

"You're sick of the game!" Well, now, that's a shame.
You're young and you're brave and you're bright.
"You've had a raw deal!" I know -- but don't squeal,
Buck up, do your damnedest, and fight.
It's the plugging away that will win you the day,
So don't be a piker, old pard!
Just draw on your grit; it's so easy to quit:
It's the keeping-your-chin-up that's hard.

It's easy to cry that you're beaten -- and die;
It's easy to crawfish and crawl;
But to fight and to fight when hope's out of sight --
Why, that's the best game of them all!
And though you come out of each gruelling bout,
All broken and beaten and scarred,
Just have one more try -- it's dead easy to die,
It's the keeping-on-living that's hard.

COMMENTS OF THE POEM
daniel foote 08 December 2018

one of his best, but never mentioned.

3 0 Reply
Ralph woldt 20 November 2018

It's a poem i memorized as a young'n in the 50's when things weren't going well. Now I'm my late 70's it rings a bell again. Robert Service has been my favorite poet.

3 0 Reply
Byron Ferrari 03 March 2018

1913 in the Yukon or 2018 homeless this crackerjack poem of utter defiance still tracks

1 0 Reply
Chris Merritt 29 September 2011

Love this poem, a kind of mantra for life. I have it tattooed on my back.

10 1 Reply
Tim C. 01 November 2018

No regerts!

0 0 Reply
Jim Armstrong 17 June 2009

...gotta love this guy!

7 0 Reply
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