Famous Poets and Poems:  Home  |  Poets  |  Poem of the Month  |  Poet of the Month  |  Top 50 Poems  |  Famous Quotes  |  Famous Love Poems

Back to main page Search for:

FamousPoetsAndPoems.com / Poets / Robert William Service / Poems
Popular Poets
Langston Hughes

Shel Silverstein

Pablo Neruda

Maya Angelou

Edgar Allan Poe

Robert Frost

Emily Dickinson

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

E. E. Cummings

Walt Whitman

William Wordsworth

Allen Ginsberg

Sylvia Plath

Jack Prelutsky

William Butler Yeats

Thomas Hardy

Robert Hayden

Amy Lowell

Oscar Wilde

Theodore Roethke

All Poets  

See also:

Poets by Nationality

African American Poets

Women Poets

Thematic Poems

Thematic Quotes

Contemporary Poets

Nobel Prize Poets

American Poets

English Poets

Robert William Service Poems
Back to Poems Page
Externalism by Robert William Service
The Greatest Writer of to-day
(With Maupassant I almost set him)
Said to me in a weary way,
The last occasion that I met him:
"Old chap, this world is more and more
Becoming bourgeois, blasé, blousy:
Thank God I've lived so long before
It got so definitely lousy."

Said I: "Old chap, I don't agree.
Why should one so dispraise the present?
For gainful guys like you and me,
It still can be extremely pleasant.
Have we not Women, Wine and Song -
A gleeful trio to my thinking;
So blithely we can get along
With laughing, loving, eating, drinking."

Said he: "Dear Boy, it may be so,
But I'm fed up with war and worry;
I would escape this world of woe,
Of wrath and wrong, of hate and hurry.
I fain would gain the peace of mind
Of Lamas on Thibetan highlands,
Or maybe sanctuary find
With beach-combers on coral islands."

Said I: "Dear Boy, don't go so far:
Just live a life of simple being;
Forgetting all the ills that are,
Be satisfied with hearing, seeing.
The sense of smell and taste and touch
Can bring you bliss in ample measure:
If only you don't think too much,
Your programme can be packed with pleasure.

"But do not try to probe below
This fairy film of Nature's screening;
Look on it as a surface show,
Without a purpose of a meaning.
Take no account of social strife,
And dread no coming cataclysm:
Let your philosophy of life
Be what I call: EXTERNALISM.

The moon shines down with borrowed light,
So savants say - I do not doubt it.
Suffice its silver trance my sight,
That's all I want to know about it.
A fig for science - 'how' and 'why'
Distract me in my happy dreaming:
Through line and form and colour I
Am all content with outward seeming. . . ."

The Greatest Writer of to-day
(I would have loved to call him Willie),
looked wry at me and went his way -
I think he thought me rather silly.
Maybe I am, but I insist
My point of view will take some beating:
Don't mock this old Externalist -
The pudding's proof is in the eating.
View Robert William Service:  Poems | Quotes | Biography | Books

Home   |   About Project   |   Privacy Policy   |   Copyright Notice   |   Links   |   Link to Us   |   Tell a Friend   |   Contact Us
Copyright © 2006 - 2010 Famous Poets And Poems . com. All Rights Reserved.
The Poems and Quotes on this site are the property of their respective authors. All information has been
reproduced here for educational and informational purposes.