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Reverence Analysis

Author: poem of Robert Service Type: poem Views: 3

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I saw the Greatest Man on Earth,

Aye, saw him with my proper eyes.

A loin-cloth spanned his proper girth,

But he was naked otherwise,

Excepting for his grey sombrero;

And when his domelike head he bared,

With reverence I stared and stared,

As mummified as any Pharaoh.

He leaned upon a little cane,

A big cigar was in his mouth;

Through spectacles of yellow stain

He gazed and gazed toward the South;

And then he dived into the sea,

As if to Corsica to swim;

His side stroke was so strong and free

I could not help but envy him.

A fitter man than I, I said,

Although his age is more than mine;

And I was strangely comforted

To see him battle in the brine.

Thought I: We have no cause for sorrow;

For one so dynamic to-day

Will gird him for the future fray

And lead us lion-like to-morrow.

The Greatest Man in all the world

Lay lazing like you or me,

Within a flimsy bathrobe curled

Upon a mattress by the sea:

He reached to pat a tou-tou's nose,

And scratched his torso now and then,

And scribbled with a fountain pen

What I assumed was jewelled prose.

And then methought he looked at me,

And hailed me with a gesture grand;

His fingers made the letter "V,"

So I, too, went to raise my hand; -

When nigh to me the barman glided

With liquid gold, and then I knew

He merely called for cock-tails two,

And so abjectly I subsided.

Yet I have had my moment's glory,

A-squatting nigh that Mighty Tory,

Proud Hero of our Island Story.


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