Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

IF

Anyone who laments the disappearance of manliness as virtue, and the cultural stoicism that our British ancestors had in spades once, can always find inspiration in Kipling's If:



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!

3 comments:

Younghusband said...

A mate of mine in China just penned the following homage a few weeks ago:
If…
If you can keep on lying when all about you
Are seeing through your lies and blaming it on you,
If you can blame others though all men doubt you,
But do it loudly enough to carry it through;
If you can’t wait and get tired by queuing,
Queues are for the weak, don’t bother with queues,
Hate the Japanese, no matter what they’re doing,
Don’t listen to others, ignore their views:

If you can cheat - and cheat others faster;
If you can bully - and bully those who aren’t the same;
If you can look at victims of environmental disaster
And laugh at the wretches with disdain;
If you can’t bear to hear the truth when it’s spoken
By Taiwanese separatists or Tibetan slaves,
Or you live in a country where everything is broken,
And you don’t stop your son when he misbehaves:

If you can look at all that is good and true
And deny it all for the sake of face,
And ignore SARS, AIDS, and bird-flu
For the honour of the Motherland and her “pure-blood” race;
If you can litter the earth with piss and shit
And imprison grannies who study Falun Gong,
And hold up high your right to spit
Though others look at you and shout “You’re wrong!”

If you can blend in crowds and join the mob,
Or drive your Landrover down a cycle path,
If you only sip tea and eat banquets in your job,
If you see others hurt, and choose to laugh;
If your culture’s achievements can be summed in a minute
And lies and corruption are all you’ve done,
Yours is the Olympics and all the golds in it,
And - which is more - you’ll be a Han, my son!

Scott said...

That's sodding brilliant!

Famille Saucier said...

I read that poem to my son after his christening.