Rudyard Kipling

(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936 / Bombay)

If - Poem by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream- -and not make dreams your master;
If you can think- -and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: 'Hold on! '

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings- -nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And- -which is more- -you'll be a Man, my son!


Poet's Notes about The Poem

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Comments about If by Rudyard Kipling

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  • Ankwasa HarlordAnkwasa Harlord (12/27/2019 4:24:00 PM)

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  • Orbiam SimonOrbiam Simon (12/24/2019 5:15:00 AM)

    Truly if I can concentrate to the teaching I'm receiving from life,
    If I can never crumble because I'm facing triers and tribulations,
    I believe I will do well in life. This is learnable.
    (Report)Reply

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  • Sandy (11/22/2019 8:29:00 PM)

    Ms. Trice, my 5th grade teacher, had our class memorize a poem every week. This has been a part of my arsenal in life since 1970, and here I am pulling it out again.
    Sending my love and appreciation through the years.
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  • Kestrel Andres (11/10/2019 9:25:00 PM)

    I listen, I find profound meaning Wonderful recording To watch his face, priceless TY (Report)Reply

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  • Judy Nelson (11/1/2019 6:44:00 PM)

    Truly amazing.l I’m going to make copies for all 5 of my boys. (Report)Reply

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  • Happiness ChiomaHappiness Chioma (10/21/2019 8:03:00 PM)

    I don't ever get tired of reading this poem. I wish to be a great let like him.. (Report)Reply

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  • Aliyannah (10/12/2019 5:30:00 AM)

    Wonderful poem thanks to everyone who suggested it to me. (Report)Reply

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  • SONIA FERNANDO (9/19/2019 11:58:00 PM)

    Wonderful poem! I studied it at school when in my teens and the powerfully written words reverberate in my mind even today. (Report)Reply

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  • Dominic Windram (9/17/2019 3:44:00 AM)

    Powerful poem that promotes the profound virtues of moral courage. It will surely echo throughout the ages! (Report)Reply

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  • Spock The VeganSpock The Vegan (9/6/2019 9:46:00 PM)

    A very inspirational poem. This is a classic. (Report)Reply

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  • Aquinas Grad (8/23/2019 5:34:00 PM)

    This poem was given to me in 1974 on a HS graduation card.
    Best graduation present I ever received.
    (Report)Reply

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  • Deepak Dhangar gayari (8/13/2019 6:17:00 AM)

    Deepak Dhangar gayari (Report)Reply

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  • Michael WalkerMichael Walker (7/27/2019 7:03:00 PM)

    The periodic, periodic sentences, which begin each stanza are highly effective
    and so is the thought, ' And-which is more-you'll be a Man, my son'. Just brilliant.
    (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
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  • Gya from Dalian (7/2/2019 2:44:00 AM)

    I read it just at the time while Sino-US trade war was raging.That made me think a lot about emotional and rational thing. (Report)Reply

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  • Rajnish MangaRajnish Manga (6/28/2019 10:32:00 PM)

    This poem is unique like kohinoor but perhaps more precious. I don't remember as to when did I read it for the first but the poem has stayed with me ever since. Thanks. (Report)Reply

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Read poems about / on: loss, trust, son, truth, dream, lost, hate, running, friend



Poem Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Poem Edited: Thursday, October 13, 2016


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