Rudyard Kipling Poems

Be inspired by these poems by Rudyard Kipling. He was born in Mumbai, India on December 30, 1865 and died in London, UK on January 18, 1936. During his lifetime he was a journalist, short-story writer, poet, and novelist.

The following are excerpts taken from the book, A Ken of Kipling: Being a Biographical Sketch of Rudyard Kipling, written in 1899, which give you insight into the man, Rudyard Kipling:

Rudyard Kipling was born in 1865, on the thirtieth day of December. His father, John Lockwood Kipling, an English artist holding an official position in India, was a native of Burslem in Staffordshire. Mr. Kipling, since to manhood grown, has said with modesty of his father and mother: "All that I am, I owe to them."

There is much in method. Mr. Kipling declares, for each story he permits to reach the public eye, six other stories are thrown bravely and resolutely into his waste-basket. " It is not what you write," he says, "but when"; and he declares that "all thought is abortive speech," and that "we write in letters of the alphabet, but, psychologically regarded, every printed page is a picture book; every word, concrete or abstract, is a picture. The picture itself may never come to the reader's consciousness, but deep down below in the unconscious realms the picture works and influences us. "

Mr. Charles Townsend Copeland, a professor at Harvard University, undertook once to wreck the Kipling idol and pulverize beneath his classical heel what the world desired most to worship. But even Mr. Copeland was just enough to say of the man he sought to destroy: "Kipling can write not only poetry, but prose in any dialect and language, putting speech into the mouths of horses, engines, and the animals of the jungle. Language is a thing over which he has every control. "

"No living writer," writes an admirer, " can equal the power Kipling possesses to present types from widely diverse but contemporaneous civilization with such striking artistic effect; his perception of the real nature of each is profound and accurate. His preponderant characteristic is his incisive manner of getting at the very heart of things, and then his picturesque power of making the reader see clearly just what he himself sees. His wonderful imagination and originality- is emphasized by a style that is stately and cheerful, and a precision of diction that always seems to choose the right word."


We hope the poetry of Rudyard Kipling inspires you!

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Rudyard Kipling  
Rudyard Kipling


    One of the most famous poems written by Rudyard Kipling is the poem, If. The poem has inspired and encouraged many people over the years. Wise words for us all!!,

  1. If
    Poet: Rudyard Kipling


    If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about don't deal in lies,
    Or being hated don't give way to hating,
    And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise......

  2. Read the entire poem at If Poems


  3. Recessional
    Poet: Rudyard Kipling


    God of our fathers, known of old-
    Lord of our far-flung battle line-
    Beneath Whose awful Hand we hold
    Dominion over palm and pine-
    Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
    Lest we forget-lest we forget!

    The tumult and the shouting dies-
    The captains and the kings depart-
    Still stands Thine ancient Sacrifice,
    A humble and a contrite heart.
    God of Hosts, be with us yet,
    Lest we forget-lest we forget!

    Far-called, our navies melt away-
    On dune and headland sinks the fire-
    Lo, all our pomp of yesterday
    Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
    Judge of the Nations, spare us yet,
    Lest we forget-lest we forget!

    If, drunk with sight of power, we loose
    Wild tongues that have not Thee in awe-
    Such boasting as the Gentiles use
    Or lesser breeds without the Law-
    Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
    Lest we forget-lest we forget!

    For heathen heart that puts her trust
    In reeking tube and iron shard,
    All valiant dust that builds on dust,
    And guarding calls not Thee to guard-
    For frantic boast and foolish word,
    Thy mercy on Thy people, Lord!


  4. Christian Poems
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  5. The Glory of the Garden
    Poet: Rudyard Kipling


    Our England is a garden that is full of stately views,
    Of borders, beds and shrubberies and lawns and avenues
    , With statues on the terraces and peacocks strutting by;
    But the Glory of the Garden lies in more than meets the eye.

    For where the old thick laurels grow, along the thin red wall,
    You’ll find the tool- and potting-sheds which are the heart of all
    The cold-frames and the hot-houses, the dung-pits and the tanks,
    The rollers, carts, and drain-pipes, with the barrows and the planks.

    And there you’ll see the gardeners, the men and ‘prentice boys
    Told off to do as they are bid and do it without noise;
    For, except when seeds are planted and we shout to scare the birds,
    The Glory of the Garden it abideth not in words.

    And some can pot begonias and some can bud a rose,
    And some are hardly fit to trust with anything that grows;
    But they can roll and trim the lawns and sift the sand and loam,
    For the Glory of the Garden occupieth all who come.

    Our England is a garden, and such gardens are not made
    By singing:-‘Oh, how beautiful,’ and sitting in the shade
    While better men than we go out and start their working lives
    At grubbing weeds from gravel-paths with broken dinner-knives.

    There’s not a pair of legs so thin, there’s not a head so thick,
    There’s not a hand so weak and white, nor yet a heart so sick
    But it can find some needful job that’s crying to be done,
    For the Glory of the Garden glorifieth every one.

    Then seek your job with thankfulness and work till further orders,
    If it’s only netting strawberries or killing slugs on borders;
    And when your back stops aching and your hands begin to harden,
    You will find yourself a partner In the Glory of the Garden.

    Oh, Adam was a gardener, and God who made him sees
    That half a proper gardener’s work is done upon his knees,
    So when your work is finished, you can wash your hands and pray
    For the Glory of the Garden that it may not pass away!
    And the Glory of the Garden it shall never pass away!


  6. Garden Poems
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  7. The Choice
    Poet: Rudyard Kipling


    The American Spirit Speaks:
    To the Judge of Right and Wrong
    With Whom fulfillment lies
    Our purpose and our power belong.
    Our faith and sacrifice.

    Let Freedom's land rejoice!
    Our ancient bonds are riven;
    Once more to us the eternal choice
    Of good or ill is given.

    Not at a little cost,
    Hardly by prayer or tears.
    Shall we recover the road we lost
    In the drugged and doubting years.

    But after the fires and the wrath.
    But after searching and pain.
    His Mercy opens us a path
    To live with ourselves again.

    In the Gates of Death rejoice!
    We see and hold the good —
    Bear witness, Earth, we have made our choice
    For Freedom's brotherhood.

    Then praise the Lord Most High
    Whose Strength hath saved us whole,
    Who bade us choose that the Flesh should die
    And not the living Soul!


  8. Poems of Encouragement
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  9. The Way Through The Woods
    Poet: Rudyard Kipling


    They shut the road through the woods
    Seventy years ago.
    Weather and rain have undone it again,
    And now you would never know
    There was once a road through the woods
    Before they planted the trees.
    It is underneath the coppice and heath,
    And the thin anemones.
    Only the keeper sees
    That, where the ring-dove broods,
    And the badgers roll at ease,
    There was once a road through the woods.

    Yet, if you enter the woods
    Of a summer evening late,
    When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
    Where the otter whistles his mate,
    (They fear not men in the woods,
    Because they see so few.)
    You will hear the beat of a horse’s feet,
    And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
    Steadily cantering through
    The misty solitudes,
    As though they perfectly knew
    The old lost road through the woods.
    But there is no road through the woods.


  10. Nature Poems
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