Skip to main content

Rudyard Kipling, #1

This - the poetry of Rudyard Kipling - was a bit of a surprise. As a kid I have read (in Russian translation) "The Jungle Book" and other Mowgli stories, the "Just So Stories", etc. So, I was firmly under impression that he only wrote prose and Kipling's poetry became a small, but very pleasant discovery for me.

I can't quite pinpoint why I like Kipling's poetry (for me, a non-native speaker, it is often hard to appreciate English poetry), but I do. Here's one of my favorites:


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 imposters 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 wornout 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 breath 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! 


Popular posts from this blog

Alan Mathison Turing

Update (11/23/2013): " Now, nearly half a century after the war hero's suicide, Queen Elizabeth II has finally granted Turing a pardon." ( ) Long overdue!!! With academic background in applied mathematics and computer science and years of experience in Information Technology it would be incredibly surprising if I didn't know of Alan Turing, or so I thought. Sure, I knew who he was and had a good idea of what he had contributed to the fields of mathematics, logic, cryptography, and of course computer science, which he basically founded; and things like Turing Machine, Turing Test, and Enigma Code-breaking have been widely popularized. I also knew that he died relatively young, but I am ashamed to admit that I didn't know anything about the circumstances surrounding his premature death. That is until I read the following in the book titled  "The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood" by James Gleick: "Turing's hom

Ten Dirty Little Secrets You Should Know About Working In IT

I like a good "xyz ten" list (where xyz = top, best, worst, ...) as much as the other guy. And though I admit that the notion is, in most cases, rather shallow (oversimplification <> clear and concise delivery of a message) it often makes for an uplifting (funny) read. Here's one: IT pros frequently use jargon to confuse nontechnical business managers and hide the fact that they screwed up Some IT professionals deploy technologies that do more to consolidate their own power than to help the business Veteran IT professionals are often the biggest roadblock to implementing new technologies You’ll spend far more time babysitting old technologies than implementing new ones Vendors and consultants will take all the credit when things work well and will blame you when things go wrong Your nontechnical co-workers will use you as personal tech support for their home PCs Certifications won’t always help you become a better technologist, but they can help you land a b

Academic Inflation and New Education Paradigms

The "new media" must be getting to me. The chain of events leading to this blog post has been triggered by a great (IMHO) video I came across on the YouTube - "Changing Education Paradigms" by Sir Ken Robinson: But this video only increased my appetite for information on the subjects that I have been thinking and talking to my friends about for quite some time - depreciation of the value of academic degrees and what should the education system of the future look like (I think it is pretty clear that major overhaul of the existing system is desirable). So, I went on to investigate Ken Robinson's point of view further by getting his book - "Out of our Minds: Learning to be Creative". And while I have not yet had much time to spend on it (a more complete review will be a subject for a different post), whatever little I have read confirmed some of my worries. Here are a few excerpts: There was a time when good academic qualifications guaranteed a