I have no brief for gambling, nay
  The notion I express
That money earned 's the only way
  To pay for happiness.
With cards and dice I do not hold;
  By betting I've been bit:
Conclusion: to get honest gold
  You've got to sweat for it.
Though there be evil in strong drink
  It's brought me heaps of fun;
And now, with some reserve, I think
  My toping days are done.
Though at teetotal cranks I laugh,
  Yet being sound and hale,
I find the best of drinks to quaff
  Is good old Adam's ale.

I do not like your moralist,
  Who with a righteous grin
Informs you o'er a pounding fist:
  "Unchastity is sin."
I don't believe it, but I grant,
  By every human test,
From parson, pimp and maiden aunt,
  Morality is best.

Yet what a bore our lives would be
  If we lived as we should;
It's such a blessing to be free,
  And not be over-good.
I value virtues great and small,
  As I in life advance:
But O the greatest sin of all

Rate this poem:(5.00 / 1 vote)


Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • Chinese - Simplified 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • Chinese - Traditional 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Spanish Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • Japanese 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Portuguese Português (Portuguese)
  • German Deutsch (German)
  • Arabic العربية (Arabic)
  • French Français (French)
  • Russian Русский (Russian)
  • Kannada ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • Korean 한국어 (Korean)
  • Hebrew עברית (Hebrew)
  • Ukrainian Український (Ukrainian)
  • Urdu اردو (Urdu)
  • Hungarian Magyar (Hungarian)
  • Hindi मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesian Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italian Italiano (Italian)
  • Tamil தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Turkish Türkçe (Turkish)
  • Telugu తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • Thai ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Vietnamese Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Czech Čeština (Czech)
  • Polish Polski (Polish)
  • Indonesian Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Romanian Românește (Romanian)
  • Dutch Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Greek Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latin Latinum (Latin)
  • Swedish Svenska (Swedish)
  • Danish Dansk (Danish)
  • Finnish Suomi (Finnish)
  • Persian فارسی (Persian)
  • Yiddish ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • Armenian հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norwegian Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English English (English)

Discuss this Robert William Service poem with the community:


Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:


"Intolerance" STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 12 Dec. 2019. <>.

We need you!

Help us build the largest poetry community and poems collection on the web!

Other poems by

Robert William Service


Our favorite collection of

Famous Poets


Thanks for your vote! We truly appreciate your support.