Robert William Service - L’Envoi

Only a rhymer, so I am,
Lone in the market place;
I shrink, and no one cares a damn
Though tears corrode my face.
The hollows of my cheeks they track,
Symbolic of vain hope;
My hands are grimed because I lack
The price of soap.

Only a rhymer! How my breeks
Let in the Winter wind;
One of my shoes obscenely leaks,
My coat is safety pinned.
Although my neb drips bead on bead,
No handkerchief have I;
My lips are blue, but none have heed
My songs to buy.

Only a rhymer,–just a chiel
Spewed from the land of Burns,
A wastrel and a ne’er-do-weel,
From whom the public turns.
Alas! It is to late to mend
The error of my ways,
So I will jingle to the end
Of all my days.

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