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|If you're up against a bruiser and you're getting
knocked about —
If you're feeling pretty groggy, and you're licked beyond a doubt —
Don't let him see you're funking, let him know with every clout,
Though your face is battered to a pulp, your blooming heart is stout;
Just stand upon your pins until the beggar knocks you out —
This life's a bally battle, and the same advice holds true
If you're up against it badly, then it's only one on you,
If the future's black as thunder, don't let people see you're blue;
Just cultivate a cast-iron smile of joy the whole day through;
If they call you "Little Sunshine", wish that THEY'D no troubles, too —
You may — grin.
Rise up in the morning with the will that, smooth or rough,
Sink to sleep at midnight, and although you're feeling tough,
There's nothing gained by whining, and you're not that kind of stuff;
You're a fighter from away back, and you WON'T take a rebuff;
Your trouble is that you don't know when you have had enough —
Don't give in.
If Fate should down you, just get up and take another cuff;
You may bank on it that there is no philosophy like bluff,
More poems by Robert Service