Resolutions

Each New Year's Eve I used to brood
On my misdoings of the past,
And vowed: "This year I'll be so good -
Well, haply better than the last."
My record of reforms I read
To Mum who listened sweetly to it:
"Why plan all this, my son?" she said;
  "Just do it."

Of her wise words I've often thought -
Aye, sometimes with a pang of pain,
When resolutions come to naught,
And high resolves are sadly vain;
The human heart from failure bleeds;
Hopes may be wrecked so that we rue them . . .
Don't let us dream of lovely deeds -
  Just do them.

And so, my son, uphold your pride.
Believe serenely in your soul.
Just take things in a steady stride,
Until behold! you've gained your goal.
But if, perchance, you frame a plan
Of conduct, let it be a free one:
Don't try to make yourself a man -
  Just be one.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Robert William Service

Robert William Service was a poet and writer sometimes referred to as the Bard of the Yukon He is best-known for his writings on the Canadian North including the poems The Shooting of Dan McGrew The Law of the Yukon and The Cremation of Sam McGee His writing was so expressive that his readers took him for a hard-bitten old Klondike prospector not the later-arriving bank clerk he actually was Robert William Service was born 16 January 1874 in Preston England but also lived in Scotland before emigrating to Canada in 1894 Service went to the Yukon Territory in 1904 as a bank clerk and became famous for his poems about this region which are mostly in his first two books of poetry He wrote quite a bit of prose as well and worked as a reporter for some time but those writings are not nearly as well known as his poems He travelled around the world quite a bit and narrowly escaped from France at the beginning of the Second World War during which time he lived in Hollywood California He died 11 September 1958 in France Incidentally he played himself in a movie called The Spoilers starring John Wayne and Marlene Dietrich more…

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    "Resolutions" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 5 Dec. 2020. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/32396/resolutions>.

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