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Ballads of a Bohemian

Robert W. Service

Available as PDF, epub, and Kindle ebook.

Tags: Poetry

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Ballads of a Bohemian is a 1921 book of poetry by Robert W. Service. Poems in the book include: Julot the Apache; Chez Moi, Montparnasse; It Is Later Than You Think; Moon Song; The Sewing-Girl; On the Boulevard; The Absinthe Drinkers; The Philistine and the Bohemian; The Pencil Seller; A Domestic Tragedy; The Philanderer; The Spirit of the Unborn Babe' If You Had a Friend; The Blood-Red Fourragère; and many more.

This book has 258 pages in the PDF version, and was originally published in 1921.

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Excerpt from 'Ballads of a Bohemian'

  Here is my Garret up five flights of stairs;

  Here's where I deal in dreams and ply in fancies,

  Here is the wonder-shop of all my wares,

  My sounding sonnets and my red romances.

  Here's where I challenge Fate and ring my rhymes,

  And grope at glory—aye, and starve at times.

  Here is my Stronghold:  stout of heart am I,

  Greeting each dawn as songful as a linnet;

  And when at night on yon poor bed I lie

  (Blessing the world and every soul that's in it),

  Here's where I thank the Lord no shadow bars

  My skylight's vision of the valiant stars.

  Here is my Palace tapestried with dreams.

  Ah! though to-night ten sous are all my treasure,

  While in my gaze immortal beauty gleams,

  Am I not dowered with wealth beyond all measure?

  Though in my ragged coat my songs I sing,

  King of my soul, I envy not the king.

  Here is my Haven:  it's so quiet here;

  Only the scratch of pen, the candle's flutter;

  Shabby and bare and small, but O how dear!

  Mark you—my table with my work a-clutter,

  My shelf of tattered books along the wall,

  My bed, my broken chair—that's nearly all.

  Only four faded walls, yet mine, all mine.

  Oh, you fine folks, a pauper scorns your pity.

  Look, where above me stars of rapture shine;

  See, where below me gleams the siren city . . .

  Am I not rich?—a millionaire no less,

  If wealth be told in terms of Happiness.

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