Poem Trump Should Read: IF

March 13, 2020 in Columnists, News by RBN Staff


By Je suis Spike for RBN


Rudyard Kipling wrote one of the greatest poems ever. It takes no work to attempt to know the mind of this poet to understand it.   Don’t get me wrong, “on little cat’s feet,” to denote silence or stillness or peacefully, or- if you don’t like cats, stealth or sneakiness- is great word usage. But some poetry is so esoteric you literally need a degree or other mind-warping to understand it.

Well Kipling does us a yuge favor, below, in his poem, IF.

This is the poem that President Trump needs to read, and I think it would do us all some good for him to read it to the nation, just as it would have done us all some good for him to read the speech I wrote for him.  Oh well.  We all could use a lesson in fortitude and not succumbing to the fear-mongering that is going on.  Whether this corona virus incident turns out to be horrible or something less, the fear that is being peddled to America is not good, but dangerous.

There is a little problem involved in reading the poem, today, however. As I have observed many times, most of the real men, today, are women. And that’s because the men, not excluding me, aren’t stepping up as we should. In fact, at Merriam-Webster online (https://www.merriam-webster.com/) you’ll find that “Man” as Kipling uses it below, is literally in danger of obsolescence. And, in fact, “Manliness” is considered obsolete.   I’m serious, look here at attendant definitions (4) d (1) and (2), reproduced, below.

(4) d (1): one possessing in high degree the qualities considered distinctive of manhood (such as courage, strength and vigor) and

(4) d (2) obsolete: the quality or state of being manly:

Let’s take a look at a familiar use of the word “manly,” (4) d (2). We find it in the Declaration of Independence, as those who not only dissolved but smashed the bands of political and tyrannical connection, help allow us to, for instance, write something like this piece of mine, published at this great news and opinion site, Republicbroadcasting.Org.   The men wrote, objecting to the machinations of King George III, “He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the right of the people.”


Rudyard Kipling

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!

God’s speed,

Je suis Spike