Robert William Service

A Song Of Winter Weather

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 …

It isn't the foe that we fear;
  It isn't the bullets that whine;
It isn't the business career
  Of a shell, or the bust of a mine;
It isn't the snipers who seek
  To nip our young hopes in the bud:
No, it isn't the guns,
And it isn't the Huns --
  It's the MUD,

It isn't the melee we mind.
That often is rather good fun.
  It isn't the shrapnel we find
Obtrusive when rained by the ton;
  It isn't the bounce of the bombs
That gives us a positive pain:
  It's the strafing we get
When the weather is wet --
  It's the RAIN,

It isn't because we lack grit
  We shrink from the horrors of war.
We don't mind the battle a bit;
  In fact that is what we are for;
It isn't the rum-jars and things
  Make us wish we were back in the fold:
It's the fingers that freeze
In the boreal breeze --
  It's the COLD,

Oh, the rain, the mud, and the cold,
  The cold, the mud, and the rain;
With weather at zero it's hard for a hero
  From language that's rude to refrain.
With porridgy muck to the knees,
  With sky that's a-pouring a flood,
Sure the worst of our foes
Are the pains and the woes
  Of the RAIN,